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The aim of the present work is to study the performance of scintillators currently used in PET and animal PET systems, under conditions met in radiation therapy and PET/CT imaging. The results of this study will be useful in applications where both CT and PET photons as well as megavoltage cone beam CT (MV CBCT) photons could be detected using a common detector unit. To this aim crystal samples of GSO, LSO, LYSO, LuYAP and YAP scintillators, doped with cerium (Ce+3) were examined under a wide energy range of photon energies. Evaluation was performed by determining the absolute luminescence efficiency (emitted light flux over incident X-ray exposure) in the energy range employed in X-ray CT, in Nuclear Medicine (70 keV up to 662 keV) and in radiotherapy 6 MV (approx. 2.0 MeV mean energy)-18 MV (approx. 4.5 MeV mean energy). Measurements were performed using an experimental set-up based on a photomultiplier coupled to a light integration sphere. The emission spectrum under X-ray excitation was measured, using an optical grating monochromator, to determine the spectral compatibility to optical photon detectors incorporated in medical imaging systems. Maximum absolute luminescence efficiency values were observed at 70 keV for YAP:Ce and LuYAP:Ce and at 140 keV for LSO:Ce, LYSO:Ce and GSO:Ce. Highest absolute efficiency between the scintillators examined was observed for LSO:Ce, followed by LYSO:Ce. The detector optical gain (DOG) exhibited a significant variation with the increase of energy between 70 keV to 2.0 MeV. All scintillators exhibited low compatibility when combined with GaAsP (G5645) photodetector.
Date of Publication: Feb. 2010