Application of A-Si: H Radiation Detectors in Medical Imaging


Monte Carlo simulations of a proposed a-Si:H-based current-integrating gamma camera were performed. The analysis showed that the intrinsic resolution of such a camera was 1 to approximately 2.5 mm, which is somewhat better than that of a conventional gamma camera, and that the greater blurring, due to the detection of scattered gamma-rays, could be reduced considerably by image restoration techniques. This proposed gamma camera would be useful for imaging shallow organs such as the thyroid. Prototype charge-storage a-Si:H pixel detectors for such a camera were designed, constructed and tested. The detectors could store signal charge as long as 5 min at (minus)26C. The thermal generation current in reverse biased a-Si:H p-i-n photodetectors was investigated, and the Poole-Frenkel effect was found to be the most significant source of the thermal generation current. Based on the Poole-Frenkel effect, voltage- and time-dependent thermal generation current was modeled. Using the model, the operating conditions of the proposed a-Si:H gamma camera, such as the operating temperature, the operating bias and the (gamma)-scan period, could be predicted. The transient photoconductive gain mechanism in various a-Si:H devices was investigated for applications in digital radiography. Using the a-Si:H photoconductors in n-i-n configuration in pixel arrays, enhancement in signal collection (more than 200 times higher signal level) can be achieved in digital radiography, compared to the ordinary p-i-n type a-Si:H x-ray imaging arrays.


Mining and Nuclear Engineering



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