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Synchrotron-radiation tomography was used to investigate early foaming stages of aluminium alloys. Monochromatic radiation, high spatial resolution down to the micrometer scale, partial beam coherence, and holographic reconstruction techniques permit the distinction between different foam constituents which are not visible by other volume imaging techniques. In combination with three-dimensional image analysis, the differences in the pore initiation processes in two different aluminium alloys are shown. We find that, in powder compacts made from prealloyed AA6061 alloy powder, pores appear predominantly around the blowing agent particles whereas, in compacts made from a powder blend of Al and Si, pores tend to initiate around Si particles.