Small animal imaging is currently a bottleneck in translating fundamental bioscientific discoveries into clinical benefits. Small animal imaging is widely used in phenotyping, drug discovery, and understanding the pathophysiology of diseases. This invention will have impacts on anatomical, functional and molecular imaging of small animal models, rapid translation of basic knowledge to clinical applications in cardiac exam, tumor imaging, tissue characterization, drug delivery, and image-guided intervention, etc.; all these will be accomplished with greatly increased efficiency and reduced cost. The commercial impacts of this intervention to the global small animal imaging device market will be huge. Imaging systems with the capabilities discussed above are projected to dominate the global small animal imaging device market, which was projected to be $2.1 billion in 2020. In a longer perspective, the novel imaging technology also holds great potential in security screening, industry inspection, dental imaging and medical imaging, which have a combined market value of $9 billion in 2020.