One of the major radiation modalities for treating cancer is hadron radiotherapy, which at present uses protons and carbon ions. This is mainly because hadrons have the unique feature of increasing energy deposition with penetration depth, with maximum energy deposition at the end of the range followed by a sharp decrease (Bragg peak).
However, treatment with hadrons requires not only an extremely accurate dose calculation, but also high spatial and dosimetric accuracy in order to achieve optimal dose delivery, which is in turn guaranteed by proper quality assurance (QA) procedures and tools.
In this project we propose the development of the next generation of the state-of-the-art GEMPix detector. The GEMPix combines two CERN technologies, a Gas Electron Multiplier (GEM) and a quad Timepix ASIC readout. We propose a cutting-edge solution by replacing the ASIC by a large-area organic photodiodes (OPD) manufactured by TNO. TNO has developed a ground-breaking technology by designing photodiodes coated on an organic TFT (thin film transistor) backplane and has introduced the first image sensors on plastic.
Based on essential characteristics of the TNO products, we plan to combine the two technologies to develop the LaGEMPix detector, to achieve a much wider area imaging detector fully exploiting the more advantageous optical readout capability. This combination can lead to a significant improvement in the detector performance with the potential to create an entire new range of products mostly for medical applications and imaging.
Building on solid foundations from years of research at CERN and experience from the existing GEMPix detector, as well as TNO expertise on TFT, this project promises to be highly innovative, yet realistic in its implementation.