A method to improve accuracy and precision of water surface identification for photon depth dose measurements

  1. Get@NRC: A method to improve accuracy and precision of water surface identification for photon depth dose measurements (Opens in a new window)
DOIResolve DOI: http://doi.org/10.1118/1.3098125
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Journal titleMedical Physics
Pages14101420; # of pages: 11
Subjectsurface identification; quality assurance; ionization chamber; relative dosimetry
AbstractThe objective of this study is to present a method to reduce the setup error inherent in clinical depth dose measurements and, in doing so, to improve entrance dosimetry measurement reliability. Ionization chamber (IC) depth dose measurements are acquired with the depth scan extended into the air above the water surface. An inflection region is obtained in each resulting percent depth ionization (PDI) curve that can be matched against other measurements or to an inflection region obtained from an analogous Monte Carlo (MC) simulation. Measurements are made with various field sizes for the 6 and 18 MV photon beams, with and without a Pb foil in the beam, to determine the sensitivity of the dose inflection region to the beam conditions. The offset between reference and test data set inflection regions is quantified using two separate methods. When comparing sets of measured data, maxima in the second derivative of ionization are compared. When comparing measured data to MC simulation, the offset that minimizes the sum of squared differences between the reference and test curves in the ionization inflection region is found. These methods can be used to quantify the offset between an initial setup (test) position and the true surface (reference) position. The ionization inflection location is found to be insensitive to changes in field size, electron contamination, and beam energy. Data from a single reference condition should be sufficient to identify the surface location. The method of determining IC offsets is general and should be applicable to any IC and other radiation sources. The measurement method could reduce the time and effort required in the initial IC setup at a water surface as setup errors can be corrected offline. Given a reliable set of reference data to compare with, this method could increase the ability of quality assurance (QA) measurements to detect discrepancies in beam output as opposed to discrepancies in IC localization. Application of the measurement method standardizes the procedure for localizing cylindrical ICs at a water surface and thereby improves the reliability of measurements taken with these devices at all depths.
Publication date
AffiliationNational Research Council Canada (NRC-CNRC); NRC Institute for National Measurement Standards
Peer reviewedYes
NPARC number15340690
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Record identifierd6321d4b-7361-46bd-a57b-6e40f07599bc
Record created2010-06-02
Record modified2016-05-09
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