A Lobster Eye X-ray Imaging System based on a unique Lobster Eye (LE) structure, X-ray generator, scintillator-based detector and cooled CCD (or Intensified CCD) for real-time, safe, staring Compton backscatter X-ray detection of objects hidden under ground, in containers, behind walls, bulkheads etc. In contrast to existing scanning pencil beam systems, Lobster Eye X-Ray Imaging System's true focusing X-ray optics simultaneously acquire ballistic Compton backscattering photons (CBPs) from an entire scene irradiated by a wide-open cone beam from one or more X-ray generators. The Lobster Eye X-ray Imaging System collects (focuses) thousands of times more backscattered hard X-rays in the range from 40 to 120 keV (or wavelength λ=0.31 to 0.1 Å) than current backscatter imaging sensors (BISs), giving high sensitivity and signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) and penetration through ground, metal walls etc. The collection efficiency of Lobster Eye X-ray Imaging System is optimized to reduce emitted X-ray power and miniaturize the device. This device is especially advantageous for and satisfies requirements of X-ray-based inspection systems, namely, penetration of the X-rays through ground, metal and other material concealments; safety; and man-portability. The advanced technology disclosed herein is also applicable to medical diagnostics and military applications such as mine detection, security screening and a like.