Some of the most important markets for our research are medical imaging systems such as Positron Emission Tomography (PET), Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography (SPECT) and Computed Tomography (CT). These systems benefit from higher energy and timing resolution and higher count-rate performance offered by our scintillators. These improvements result in better images, improved background reduction, and potentially lower patient radiation dose. Additionally, a sensitive detector with high response speed can be used in other important non-imaging nuclear medicine instruments such as surgical probes. The high speed of the material may make possible new approaches, such as combined CT with PET or SPECT using a single detector for both modalities. Our scintillators research also shows great promise for medical radiology applications such as mammography (with fine pixilation), general snap-shot radiography, and high frame-rates fluoroscopy.
Medical Diagnostic Applications
Procedures such as bone densitometry for diagnosing osteoporosis use x-ray detectors to measure differential absorption of x-rays of differing energy. The availability of better, more sensitive detectors shorten the measurement time needed for diagnosis. High performance x-ray detectors have also been proposed for use for the non-invasive diagnosis of lead and heavy metal poisoning.