Boron Neutron Capture Therapy (BNCT) is a therapeutic technique exploiting the release of dose inside the tumour cell after a fission of a B-10 nucleus following the capture of a thermal neutron. BNCT could be the treatment for extended tumors (liver, stomach, lung), radio-resistant ones (melanoma) or tumours surrounded by vital organs (brain). The application of BNCT requires a high thermal neutron flux (> 5 x 10(8) n cm(-2) s(-1)) with the correct energy spectrum (neutron energy < 10 keV), two requirements that for the moment are fulfilled only by nuclear reactors. The INFN PhoNeS (Photo Neutron Source) project is trying to produce such a neutron beam with standard radiotherapy Linacs, maximizing with a dedicated photo-neutron converter the neutrons produced by Giant Dipole Resonance by a high energy (> 8 MeV) photon beam. In this framework, we have developed a real-time detector to measure the thermal neutron time-of -flight to compute the flux and the energy spectrum. Given the pulsed nature of Linac beams, the detector is a single neutron counting system made of a scintillator detecting the photon emitted after the neutron capture by the hydrogen nuclei. The scintillator signal is sampled by a dedicated FPGA clock thus obtaining the exact arrival time of the neutron itself. The paper will present the detector and its electronics, the feasibility measurements with a Varian Clinac 1800/2100CD and comparison with a Monte Carlo simulation.

A time-of-flight detector for thermal neutrons from radiotherapy Linacs

CONTI, VALENTINA;BARTESAGHI, GIACOMO;V. MASCAGNA;PREST, MICHELA;MOZZANICA, ALDO;
2007

Abstract

Boron Neutron Capture Therapy (BNCT) is a therapeutic technique exploiting the release of dose inside the tumour cell after a fission of a B-10 nucleus following the capture of a thermal neutron. BNCT could be the treatment for extended tumors (liver, stomach, lung), radio-resistant ones (melanoma) or tumours surrounded by vital organs (brain). The application of BNCT requires a high thermal neutron flux (> 5 x 10(8) n cm(-2) s(-1)) with the correct energy spectrum (neutron energy < 10 keV), two requirements that for the moment are fulfilled only by nuclear reactors. The INFN PhoNeS (Photo Neutron Source) project is trying to produce such a neutron beam with standard radiotherapy Linacs, maximizing with a dedicated photo-neutron converter the neutrons produced by Giant Dipole Resonance by a high energy (> 8 MeV) photon beam. In this framework, we have developed a real-time detector to measure the thermal neutron time-of -flight to compute the flux and the energy spectrum. Given the pulsed nature of Linac beams, the detector is a single neutron counting system made of a scintillator detecting the photon emitted after the neutron capture by the hydrogen nuclei. The scintillator signal is sampled by a dedicated FPGA clock thus obtaining the exact arrival time of the neutron itself. The paper will present the detector and its electronics, the feasibility measurements with a Varian Clinac 1800/2100CD and comparison with a Monte Carlo simulation.
BNCT; neutron; time of flight; linac
Conti, Valentina; Bartesaghi, Giacomo; Bolognini, D.; Mascagna, V.; Perboni, C.; Prest, Michela; Scazzi, S.; Mozzanica, Aldo; Cappelletti, P.; Frigerio, M.; Gelosa, S.; Monti, A.; Ostinelli, A.; Giannini, G.; Vallazza, E.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11383/1670077
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