Evaluation of the water equivalence of solid phantoms using gamma ray transmission measurements

Institute of Medical Physics, School of Physics, University of Sydney, Australia; Department of Radiation Oncology, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney, Australia; Department of Radiation Oncology, Royal North Shore Hospital, Sydney, Australia
Radiation Measurements 01/2008; DOI: 10.1016/j.radmeas.2008.01.019

ABSTRACT Gamma ray transmission measurements have been used to evaluate the water equivalence of solid phantoms. Technetium-99m was used in narrow beam geometry and the transmission of photons measured, using a gamma camera, through varying thickness of the solid phantom material and water. Measured transmission values were compared with Monte Carlo calculated transmission data using the EGSnrc Monte Carlo code to score fluence in a geometry similar to that of the measurements. The results indicate that the RMI457 Solid Water, CMNC Plastic Water and PTW RW3 solid phantoms had similar transmission values as compared to water to within ±1.5%. However, Perspex had a greater deviation in the transmission values up to ±4%. The agreement between the measured and EGSnrc calculated transmission values agreed to within ±1% over the range of phantom thickness studied. The linear attenuation coefficients at the gamma ray energy of 140.5 keV were determined from the measured and EGSnrc calculated transmission data and compared with predicted values derived from data provided by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) using the XCOM program. The coefficients derived from the measured data were up to 6% lower than those predicted by the XCOM program, while the coefficients determined from the Monte Carlo calculations were between measured and XCOM values. The results indicate that a similar process can be followed to determine the water equivalency of other solid phantoms and at other photon energies.

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    ABSTRACT: PRESAGE is a dosimeter made of polyurethane, which is suitable for 3D dosimetry in modern radiation treatment techniques. Since an ideal dosimeter is radiologically water equivalent, the authors investigated water equivalency and the radiological properties of three different PRESAGE formulations that differ primarily in their elemental compositions. Two of the formulations are new and have lower halogen content than the original formulation. The radiological water equivalence was assessed by comparing the densities, interaction probabilities, and radiation dosimetry properties of the three different PRESAGE formulations to the corresponding values for water. The relative depth doses were calculated using Monte Carlo methods for 50, 100, 200, and 350 kVp and 6 MV x-ray beams. The mass densities of the three PRESAGE formulations varied from 5.3% higher than that of water to as much as 10% higher than that of water for the original formulation. The probability of photoelectric absorption in the three different PRESAGE formulations varied from 2.2 times greater than that of water for the new formulations to 3.5 times greater than that of water for the original formulation. The mass attenuation coefficient for the three formulations is 12%-50% higher than the value for water. These differences occur over an energy range (10-100 keV) in which the photoelectric effect is the dominant interaction. The collision mass stopping powers of the relatively lower halogen-containing PRESAGE formulations also exhibit marginally better water equivalency than the original higher halogen-containing PRESAGE formulation. Furthermore, the depth dose curves for the lower halogen-containing PRESAGE formulations are slightly closer to that of water for a 6 MV beam. In the kilovoltage energy range, the depth dose curves for the lower halogen-containing PRESAGE formulations are in better agreement with water than the original PRESAGE formulation. Based on the results of this study, the new PRESAGE formulations with lower halogen content are more radiologically water equivalent overall than the original formulation. This indicates that the new PRESAGE formulations are better suited to clinical applications and are more accurate dosimeters and phantoms than the original PRESAGE formulation. While correction factors are still needed to convert the dose measured by the dosimeter to an absorbed dose in water in the kilovoltage energy range, these correction factors are considerably smaller for the new PRESAGE formulations compared to the original PRESAGE and the existing polymer gel dosimeters.
    Medical Physics 04/2011; 38(4):2265-74. · 2.91 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The measurement of absorbed dose to water in a solid-phantom may require a conversion factor because it may not be radiologically equivalent to water. One phantom developed for the use of dosimetry is a solid water, RW3 white-polystyrene material by IBA. This has a lower mass-energy absorption coefficient than water due to high bremsstrahlung yield, which affects the accuracy of absolute dosimetry measurements. In this paper, we demonstrate the calculation of mass-energy absorption coefficient ratios, relative to water, from measurements in plastic water and RW3 with an Elekta Synergy linear accelerator (6 and 10 MV photon beams) as well as Monte Carlo modeling in BEAMnrc and DOSXYZnrc. From this, the solid-phantom-to-water correction factor was determined for plastic water and RW3.
    Australasian physical & engineering sciences in medicine / supported by the Australasian College of Physical Scientists in Medicine and the Australasian Association of Physical Sciences in Medicine 09/2011; 34(4):553-8. · 0.89 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Estimation of the surface dose is very important for patients undergoing radiation therapy. The purpose of this study is to investigate the dose at the surface of a water phantom at a depth of 0.007 cm as recommended by the International Commission on Radiological Protection and International Commission on Radiation Units and Measurement with radiochromic films (RFs), thermoluminescent dosemeters and an ionisation chamber in a 6-MV photon beam. The results were compared with the theoretical calculation using Monte Carlo (MC) simulation software (MCNP5, BEAMnrc and DOSXYZnrc). The RF was calibrated by placing the films at a depth of maximum dose (dmax) in a solid water phantom and exposing it to doses from 0 to 500 cGy. The films were scanned using a transmission high-resolution HP scanner. The optical density of the film was obtained from the red component of the RGB images using ImageJ software. The per cent surface dose (PSD) and percentage depth dose (PDD) curve were obtained by placing film pieces at the surface and at different depths in the solid water phantom. TLDs were placed at a depth of 10 cm in a solid water phantom for calibration. Then the TLDs were placed at different depths in the water phantom and were exposed to obtain the PDD. The obtained PSD and PDD values were compared with those obtained using a cylindrical ionisation chamber. The PSD was also determined using Monte Carlo simulation of a LINAC 6-MV photon beam. The extrapolation method was used to determine the PSD for all measurements. The PSD was 15.0±3.6 % for RF. The TLD measurement of the PSD was 16.0±5.0 %. The (0.6 cm(3)) cylindrical ionisation chamber measurement of the PSD was 50.0±3.0 %. The theoretical calculation using MCNP5 and DOSXYZnrc yielded a PSD of 15.0±2.0 % and 15.7±2.2 %. In this study, good agreement between PSD measurements was observed using RF and TLDs with the Monte Carlo calculation. However, the cylindrical chamber measurement yielded an overestimate of the PSD. This is probably due to the ionisation chamber calibration factor that is only valid in charged particle equilibrium condition, which is not achieved at the surface in the build-up region.
    Radiation Protection Dosimetry 12/2013; · 0.91 Impact Factor

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