Technical Note: An alternative approach to verify 6FFF beam dosimetry for Ethos and MR Linac without using a 3D water tank

Yao Hao, Bin Cai, Olga Green, Nels Knutson, Sridhar Yaddanapudi, Tianyu Zhao, Vivian Rodriguez, Matthew Schmidt, Sasa Mutic, Baozhou Sun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Purpose: The current approach to Linac beam dosimetry verification is typically performed utilizing a three-dimensional (3D) water tank system. The 3D beam scanning process is cumbersome, labor intensive, error-prone, and costly. This is especially challenging for the new Ethos system and MR Linacs with a ring gantry. This work proposes an alternative approach to verify 6FFF beam dosimetry for Ethos, ViewRay MRIdian® Linac, and other Linacs with 6FFF beam quality using two-dimensional (2D) ion chamber arrays. Methods: Percentage depth dose (PDD) and profiles of an Ethos, an MRIdian® Linac, and several Linacs with 6FFF beams were measured at the nominal beam current. The beam energy was detuned by changing the bending magnet current on one TrueBeam. PDDs and profiles were measured for detuned beam energies. The peak shape of the 6FFF profile was defined by a “slope” parameter and unflatness. Correlations between peak slope and unflatness metrics vs PDDs were used to evaluate the sensitivity of beam energy to beam profile changes at different field sizes and depths. Results: Strong correlations were found between peak slope and PDDs for all Linacs with 6FFF beam. The R-squared values in the linear regression fitting between PDD and peak slope and unflatness were 0.99 and 0.84, respectively. Both profile slope and unflatness were proportional to PDD at the 10 cm depth and the peak slope was 4.3 times more sensitive than PDD. We have identified that measurements with a shallow depth are preferred to quantify the beam energy consistency. Conclusions: Our work shows the feasibility of verifying 6FFF beam quality of Ethos, MR Linac, and other Linacs by defining a profile slope measured from 2D ionization chambers array devices. This new approach provides a simplified method for performing a routine beam quality check without using a 3D water tank system while maximizing cost effectiveness and efficiency.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1533-1539
Number of pages7
JournalMedical physics
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2021


  • PDD
  • flattening filter free
  • profile
  • slope
  • unflatness


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