Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


School of Physics


Technological advancements of particle therapy for high-precision cancer treatment require in situ and in vivo beam range and dose verifications to ensure safe and accurate targeted dose delivery while sparing healthy tissue and critical organs-at-risk. The use of prompt gamma (PG) rays, which are emitted as secondary by-products during beam irradiation, have been proposed as a promising means for in vivo Bragg peak (BP) tracking. Although significant research efforts have been made worldwide in the past two decades, the technological challenges for clinically applicable PG detection device development and associated system integration with the particle therapy treatment still remain to be tackled.

The research effort of this thesis was targeted at those challenges in PG detection methodology and technology. This work thus spans three major aspects: (i) Systematic Geant4 simulation studies of PG emission and detection characteristics from multi-dimensions of energy, space and time. This study aimed to determine optimal PG detection methodologies and technologies. (ii) Characterisation of commercially available advanced scintillation crystals to explore suitable high-performance detectors for energy- and time-resolved PG measurements toward a potential hybrid PG detection system. The measurements were performed at the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO). (iii) Performance evaluation of Monte Carlo simulation predictions of PG rays with a dedicated PG spectroscopy (PGS) prototype system at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) (Boston, USA).



Unless otherwise indicated, the views expressed in this thesis are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the University of Wollongong.