A novel phoswich imaging detector for simultaneous beta and coincidence-gamma imaging of plant leaves

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11 Scopus citations


To meet the growing demand for functional imaging technology for use in studying plant biology, we are developing a novel technique that permits simultaneous imaging of escaped positrons and coincidence gammas from annihilation of positrons within an intake leaf. The multi-modality imaging system will include two planar detectors: one is a typical PET detector array and the other is a phoswich imaging detector that detects both beta and gamma. The novel phoswich detector is made of a plastic scintillator, a lutetium oxyorthosilicate (LSO) array, and a position sensitive photomultiplier tube (PS-PMT). The plastic scintillator serves as a beta detector, while the LSO array serves as a gamma detector and light guide that couples scintillation light from the plastic detector to the PMT. In our prototype, the PMT signal was fed into the Siemens QuickSilver electronics to achieve shaping and waveform sampling. Pulse-shape discrimination based on the detectors' decay times (2.1 ns for plastic and 40 ns for LSO) was used to differentiate beta and gamma events using the common PMT signals. Using our prototype phoswich detector, we simultaneously measured a beta image and gamma events (in single mode). The beta image showed a resolution of 1.6 mm full-width-at-half-maximum using F-18 line sources. Because this shows promise for plant-scale imaging, our future plans include development of a fully functional simultaneous beta-and-coincidence- gamma imager with sub-millimeter resolution imaging capability for both modalities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5583-5598
Number of pages16
JournalPhysics in medicine and biology
Issue number17
StatePublished - Sep 7 2011


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