SU-F-T-13: Transit Dose Comparisons for Co-60 and Ir-192 HDR Sources




The purpose of this study is to compare the transit dose due to the movement of high dose rate (HDR) Ir-192 and Co-60 sources along the transfer tube. This is performed by evaluating air-kerma differences in the vicinity of the transfer tube when both sources are moved with the same velocity from a HDR brachytherapy afterloader into a patient.


Monte Carlo simulations have been performed using PENELOPE2014. mHDR-v2 and Flexisource sources have been considered. Collisional kerma has been scored. The sources were simulated within a plastic catheter located in an infinite air phantom. The movement of the seed was included by displacing their positions along the connecting catheter from z=−75 cm to z=+75 cm and combining them. Backscatter from the afterloader and the patient was not considered. Since modern afterloaders like Flexitron (Elekta) or Saginova (Bebig) are able to use equally Ir-192 and Co-60 sources it was assumed that both sources are displaced with equal speed. Typical content activity values were provided by the manufacturer (460 GBq for Ir-192 and 75 GBq for Co-60).


2D distributions were obtained with type-A uncertainties (k=2) less than 0.01%. From those, the air kerma ratio Co-60/Ir-192 was evaluated weighted by their corresponding activities. It was found that it varies slowly with distance (less than 10% variation) but strongly in time due to the shorter half-life of the Ir-192 (73.83 days). The maximum ratio is located close to the catheter with a value of 0.57 when both sources are installed by the manufacturer, while increasing up to 1.25 at the end of the recommended working life (90 days) of the Ir-192 source.


Air-kerma ratios are almost constant (0.51–0.57) in the vicinity of the source. Nevertheless, air-kerma ratios increase rapidly whenever the Ir-192 is approaching the end of its life.