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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/19249

Title: Development of a Flat Panel Detector with Avalanche Gain for Interventional Radiology
Authors: Wronski, Maciej
Advisor: Rowlands, John A.
Department: Medical Biophysics
Keywords: interventional radiology
flat panel detector
flat panel imager
avalanche multiplication
amorphous selenium
fluoroscopy
Issue Date: 3-Mar-2010
Abstract: A number of interventional procedures such as cardiac catheterization, angiography and the deployment of endovascular devices are routinely performed using x-ray fluoroscopy. To minimize the patient’s exposure to ionizing radiation, each fluoroscopic image is acquired using a very low x-ray exposure (~ 1 uR at the detector). At such an exposure, most semiconductor-based digital flat panel detectors (FPD) are not x-ray quantum noise limited (QNL) due to the presence of electronic noise which substantially degrades their imaging performance. The goal of this thesis was to investigate how a FPD based on amorphous selenium (a-Se) with internal avalanche multiplication gain could be used for QNL fluoroscopic imaging at the lowest clinical exposures while satisfying all of the requirements of a FPD for interventional radiology. Towards this end, it was first determined whether a-Se can reliably provide avalanche multiplication gain in the solid-state. An experimental method was developed which enabled the application of sufficiently large electric field strengths across the a-Se. This method resulted in avalanche gains as high as 10000 at an applied field of 105 V/um using optical excitation. This was the first time such high avalanche gains have been reported in a solid-state detector based on an amorphous material. Secondly, it was investigated how the solid-state a-Se avalanche detector could be used to image X-rays at diagnostic radiographic energies (~ 75 kVp). A dual-layered direct-conversion FPD architecture was proposed. It consisted of an x-ray drift region and a charge avalanche multiplication region and was found to eliminate depth-dependent gain fluctuation noise. It was shown that electric field strength non-uniformities in the a-Se do not degrade the detective quantum efficiency (DQE). Lastly, it was determined whether the solid-state a-Se avalanche detector satisfies all of the requirements of interventional radiology. Experimental results have shown that the total noise produced by the detector is negligible and that QNL operation at the lowest fluoroscopic exposures is indeed possible without any adverse effects occurring at much larger radiographic exposures. In conclusion, no fundamental obstacles were found preventing the use of avalanche a-Se in next-generation solid-state QNL FPDs for use in interventional radiology.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/19249
Appears in Collections:Doctoral
Department of Medical Biophysics - Doctoral theses

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