IBA - Ion Beam Applications

Imaging solutions for a novel prompt gamma camera 

Trainee: Johannes Petzoldt
Supervisor: Damien Prieels

Ion therapy offers extremely high precision in beam delivery and hence demands very high accuracy to ensure that the maximum penetration depth coincides with the tumor. On-line beam range verification is therefore highly desirable and would reduce the safety margins, currently applied in clinical practice. Prompt gamma rays are emitted along the particle track due to nuclear collisions between ions and patient tissue. Hence, they are an ideal probe to determine the particle range due to their correlation to the dose, the low attenuation inside the patient and their instantaneous emission. The ‘slit camera’ of IBA measures the spatial prompt gamma emission separately for each pencil beam and allows therefore a range retrieval on a spot level. Two prototypes of the camera are used by the clinical partners in the US and Europe. First patient measurements have been performed in 2015 and 2016 by the partner institutions. In this project, the Fellow will develop software tools to perform and test the various new treatment workflows made possible by the ‘slit camera’.
The Fellow also supports clinical partners in their efforts to increase the number of different treatment cases, which can be monitored by the camera. One possibility would be the development of a faster and more robust implementation of the camera into the clinical workflow by means of positioning and position reproducibility.