MO-FG-202-04: Gantry-Resolved Linac QA for VMAT: A Comprehensive and Efficient System Using An Electronic Portal Imaging Device




To automate gantry-resolved linear accelerator (linac) quality assurance (QA) for volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT) using an electronic portal imaging device (EPID).


A QA system for VMAT was developed that uses an EPID, frame-grabber assembly and in-house developed image processing software. The system relies solely on the analysis of EPID image frames acquired without the presence of a phantom. Images were acquired at 8.41 frames per second using a frame grabber and ancillary acquisition computer. Each image frame was tagged with a gantry angle from the linac's on-board gantry angle encoder. Arc-dynamic QA plans were designed to assess the performance of each individual linac component during VMAT. By analysing each image frame acquired during the QA deliveries the following eight machine performance characteristics were measured as a function of gantry angle: MLC positional accuracy, MLC speed constancy, MLC acceleration constancy, MLC-gantry synchronisation, beam profile constancy, dose rate constancy, gantry speed constancy, dose-gantry angle synchronisation and mechanical sag. All tests were performed on a Varian iX linear accelerator equipped with a 120 leaf Millennium MLC and an aS1000 EPID (Varian Medical Systems, Palo Alto, CA, USA).


Machine performance parameters were measured as a function of gantry angle using EPID imaging and compared to machine log files and the treatment plan. Data acquisition is currently underway at 3 centres, incorporating 7 treatment units, at 2 weekly measurement intervals.


The proposed system can be applied for streamlined linac QA and commissioning for VMAT. The set of test plans developed can be used to assess the performance of each individual components of the treatment machine during VMAT deliveries as a function of gantry angle. The methodology does not require the setup of any additional phantom or measurement equipment and the analysis is fully automated to allow for regular routine testing.