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This paper describes a flexible new methodology for accurate cone beam reconstruction with source positions on a curve (or set of curves). The inversion formulas employed by this methodology are based on first backprojecting a simple derivative in the projection space and then applying a Hilbert transform inversion in the image space. The local nature of the projection space filtering distinguishes this approach from conventional filtered-backprojection methods. This characteristic together with a degree of flexibility in choosing the direction of the Hilbert transform used for inversion offers two important features for the design of data acquisition geometries and reconstruction algorithms. First, the size of the detector necessary to acquire sufficient data for accurate reconstruction of a given region is often smaller than that required by previously documented approaches. In other words, more data truncation is allowed. Second, redundant data can be incorporated for the purpose of noise reduction. The validity of the inversion formulas along with the application of these two properties are illustrated with reconstructions from computer simulated data. In particular, in the helical cone beam geometry, it is shown that 1) intermittent transaxial truncation has no effect on the reconstruction in a central region which means that wider patients can be accommodated on existing scanners, and more importantly that radiation exposure can be reduced for region of interest imaging and 2) at maximum pitch the data outside the Tam-Danielsson window can be used to reduce image noise and thereby improve dose utilization. Furthermore, the degree of axial truncation tolerated by our approach for saddle trajectories is shown to be larger than that of previous methods.
Date of Publication: Jan. 2005