A Monte Carlo study to evaluate and optimise the angular dependence of the Octa – A 2D silicon array detector used for dosimetry in stereotactic radiotherapy

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Radiation Measurements


Purpose: A detector assembly based on a 2D silicon array sensor, Octa, was previously demonstrated to be accurate for small field relative dosimetry. Experimental studies showed angular dependence of the response that has also variations with the field size. A Monte Carlo simulation model was developed and used in this work to study how the detector assembly's components contribute to the observed angular dependence. Methods: Geant4 was used as the Monte Carlo code. A detailed model of the Octa detector and its packaging was placed in the centre of a solid water phantom with the central sensitive volumes (SVs) located at the isocentre and irradiated at polar angles from 0 to 180° (the beam was normal to the detector plane at 0°). Phase-space files from the IAEA database were used to model a CyberKnife X-ray beam with collimator diameters of 5, 10, and 15 mm. Reference simulations were compared with previous experimental results. To investigate the impact of the assembly's materials, simulations were conducted by iteratively substituting the non-water-equivalent materials of certain components with solid water. In terms of geometry, the influence of the dimensions of an air gap on top of the SVs and the silicon substrate thickness were investigated. Results: Presence of the silicon surrounding the detector's SVs caused the highest decrease in energy deposition – up to (27 ± 1)%. Thickness of the air gap placed on top of the SVs had no effect at angles below 90°, but for 90–180°, it showed the largest impact on the variation in angular dependence between fields of different sizes – from (6 ± 2)% for 1 mm gap to (24 ± 2)% for 2 mm gap. The variation in the silicon substrate thickness and the air gap's lateral length, as well as presence of the PCB layer did not show significant influence on the angular response. Conclusion: Further development of the detector assembly's design can be driven by mechanical robustness to provide reliability for clinical routine without sacrificing angular dependence. Current design is recommended for use at angles 0–90°: it has shown independence of the angular response from small field size variation and it was previously optimised to be correction-free in output factor measurements. The air gap dimensions are recommended as the main variable parameters for optimisation for further studies when small X-ray beams are measured by the detector positioned in axial plane.

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