DESIGN AND DEVELOPMENT OF A MEGAVOLTAGE CT SCANNER FOR RADIATION THERAPY.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractA Varian 4 MeV isocentric therapy accelerator has been modified to perform also as a CT scanner. The goal is to provide low cost computed tomography capability for use in radiotherapy. The system will have three principal uses. These are (i) to provide 2- and 3-dimensional maps of electron density distribution for CT assisted therapy planning, (ii) to aid in patient set up by providing sectional views of the treatment volume and high contrast scout-mode verification images and (iii) to provide a means for periodically checking the patients anatomical conformation against what was used to generate the original therapy plan. The treatment machine was modified by mounting an array of detectors on a frame bolted to the counter weight end of the gantry in such a manner as to define a 'third generation' CT Scanner geometry. The data gathering is controlled by a Z-80 based microcomputer system which transfers the x-ray transmission data to a general purpose PDP 11/34 for processing. There a series of calibration processes and a logarithmic conversion are performed to get projection data. After reordering the projection data to an equivalent parallel beam sinogram format a convolution algorithm is employed to construct the image from the equivalent parallel projection data. Results of phantom studies have shown a spatial resolution of 2.6 mm and an electron density discrimination of less than 1% which are sufficiently good for accurate therapy planning. Results also show that the system is linear to within the precision of our measurement (≈ .75%) over a wide range of electron densities corresponding to those found in body tissues. Animal and human images are also presented to demonstrate that the system's imaging capability is sufficient to allow the necessary visualization of anatomy.
Degree ProgramOptical Sciences