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Previously we have evaluated two crystal calibration techniques that can be applied to pixelated detector designs to improve system spatial resolution without detector motion. The inter-crystal positioning technique utilizes sub-sampling in the crystal flood map to better sample the Compton scatter events in the detector. The Compton scatter rejection technique, on the other hand, rejects those events that are located further from individual crystal centers in the flood map. Here we performed imaging studies with a Mini Deluxe hot rod phantom and a hot sphere phantom (sphere diameters of 4.95 and 7.86-mm with 6:1 uptake relative to background) using the standard crystal calibration technique, as well as the inter-crystal and Compton rejection calibration techniques. Our results show improved separation of 1.6-mm diameter hot rods with the two new crystal calibration techniques that is consistent with improved spatial resolution. For the hot sphere phantom the contrast recovery is improved with both the inter-crystal and Compton rejection calibration techniques over the standard calibration technique. The only drawback of the inter-crystal calibration technique is the increase in the number of possible lines-of-response (LORs) (factor of 16) that may slow image reconstruction. With the Compton rejection calibration technique, loss of counts leads to increased noise in the images.
Date of Publication: Oct. 2010