Fifty-sixth annual meeting of the American association of physicists in medicine
SU-E-QI-15: Single Point Dosimetry by Means of Cerenkov Radiation Energy Transfer (CRET)
Cerenkov light is generated when a charged particles with energy greater then 250 keV, moves faster than the speed of light in a given medium. Both x-ray photons and electrons produce optical Cerenkov photons during the static megavoltage linear accelerator (LINAC) operational mode. Recently, Cerenkov radiation gained considerable interest as possible candidate as a new imaging modality. Optical signals generated by Cerenkov radiation may act as a surrogate for the absorbed superficial radiation dose. We demonstrated a novel single point dosimetry method for megavoltage photon and electron therapy utilizing down conversion of Cerenkov photons.
The custom build signal characterization system was used: a sample holder (probe) with adjacent light tight compartments was connected via fiber-optic cables to a photon counting photomultiplier tube (PMT). One compartment contains a medium only while the other contains medium and red-shifting nano-particles (Q-dots, nanoclusters). By taking the difference between the two signals (Cerenkov photons and CRET photons) we obtain a measure of the down-converted light, which we expect to be proportional to dose as measured with an adjacent ion chamber. Experimental results are compared to Monte Carlo simulations performed using the GEANT4 code.
The signal correlation between CR signal, CRET readings and dose produced by LINAC at a single point were investigated. The experimental results were compared with simulations. The dose linearity, signal to noise ratio and dose rate dependence were tested with custom build CRET based probe.
Performance characteristics of the proposed single point CRET based probe were evaluated. The direct use of the induced Cerenkov emission and CRET in an irradiated single point volume as an indirect surrogate for the imparted dose was investigated. We conclude that CRET is a promising optical based dosimetry method that offers advantages over those already proposed.