Étude du tomographe de haute résolution pour petits animaux ClearPET par la méthode de Monte Carlo

The Lausanne ClearPET demonstrator is one of the new generation of high resolution small animal PET scanners. A high resolution PET scanner aims to maximize the signal-to-noise ratio measured in pixels for a given time without compromising spatial resolution. In order to achieve it, ClearPET scanners are based on phoswich technology : two different crystals (LSO and LuYAP) are aligned one behind the other and coupled to the same channel of a multichannel photo-detector. Depth-of-interaction is determined by a pulse shape analysis. To improve the prototype design, a Monte Carlo simulation toolkit dedicated to emission tomography – GATE – was created. The accurate description of time-dependent phenomena such as source or detector movement and source decay kinetics represents the most important feature of this software. The first part of this work presents the demonstrator built in Lausanne, mainly the DAQ process and the libraries for the data treatment, and the GATE functionality. In the second part, the measurements obtained with the ClearPET demonstrator combined with simulations are presented. The simulations allow estimation of the performance of a final scanner and refinement of the detector head design. Measurements as well as simulations give a spatial resolution of 1.3 mm on the scanner axis and 2.5 mm at 4 cm from the axis. Temporal resolution for two modules with the same sampling phase is about 4.3 ns for LSO and 4.9 ns for LuYAP. For a standard acquisition, the energy resolution at 511 keV is about 31 ± 4 % for LSO and 33 ± 8 % for LuYAP. The peaks at full energy before calibration are about 480 ± 50 keV1 for LSO and 470 ± 40 keV1 for LuYAP. These variations, coupled with hardware threshold, are one of the main reasons for the sensitivity and count rate performance limitations. A sensitivity of 4.37 ± 0.05 is estimated for a full ring design with four rings of detector modules. The large systematic errors are induced by the variability previously mentioned. ------------------------------ 1 As spectra are not normalized, keV unities are inappropriate. Channel numbers are more accurate.

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