SU-E-T-46: Application of a Twin-Detector Method for the Determination of the Mean Photon Energy Em at Points of Measurement in a Water Phantom Surrounding a GammaMed HDR 192Ir Brachytherapy Source

Authors


Abstract

Purpose:

In a brachytherapy photon field in water the fluence-averaged mean photon energy Em at the point of measurement correlates with the radiation quality correction factor kQ of a non water-equivalent detector. To support the experimental assessment of Em, we show that the normalized signal ratio NSR of a pair of radiation detectors, an unshielded silicon diode and a diamond detector can serve to measure quantity Em in a water phantom at a Ir-192 unit.

Methods:

Photon fluence spectra were computed in EGSnrc based on a detailed model of the GammaMed source. Factor kQ was calculated as the ratio of the detector's spectrum-weighted responses under calibration conditions at a 60Co unit and under brachytherapy conditions at various radial distances from the source. The NSR was investigated for a pair of a p-type unshielded silicon diode 60012 and a synthetic single crystal diamond detector 60019 (both PTW Freiburg). Each detector was positioned according to its effective point of measurement, with its axis facing the source. Lateral signal profiles were scanned under complete scatter conditions, and the NSR was determined as the quotient of the signal ratio under application conditions x and that at position r_ref = 1 cm.

Results:

The radiation quality correction factor kQ shows a close correlation with the mean photon energy Em. The NSR of the diode/diamond pair changes by a factor of two from 0–18 cm from the source, while Em drops from 350 to 150 keV. Theoretical and measured NSR profiles agree by ± 2 % for points within 5 cm from the source.

Conclusion:

In the presence of the close correlation between radiation quality correction factor kQ and photon mean energy Em, the NSR provides a practical means of assessing Em under clinical conditions. Precise detector positioning is the major challenge.

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