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Compact cancer-therapy particle-delivery system patented
Date:5/12/2009

ked on accelerator developments for basic physics research at Brookhaven Lab for 17 years, incorporated these developments into the new medical gantry design.

"The opportunity to be involved in accelerator physics development for projects like the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC) has enabled me to further expand my knowledge for medical applications," Trbojevic said.

Trbojevic's design makes use of fixed-field magnets, as opposed to the much larger and more complex variable magnets used at most existing particle-therapy facilities. In this design, the beam is transferred for the whole energy range without the need for any changes in the magnets. Additionally, each of the magnets performs two functions: bending the particle beam along the particle path, and either focusing or defocusing the beam for precision particle delivery.

"Protons or carbon ions with a wide range of energies can be transported precisely through the small combined-function magnets," Trbojevic said. "These magnets provide extremely strong focusing and control of the beam positions.

"Because these magnets are so compact, the weight of the entire gantry can be about 100 times less than it would be with the variable magnet design," he said. As an example, a 160-ton gantry made from conventional magnets would weigh about 1.5 tons using Trbojevic's design. Even with equipment needed to keep the superconducting magnets cool, the particle delivery system would still me more compact and economical than existing designs.

The very small, combined-function, superconducting magnets that make the new design so attractive could be manufactured at Brookhaven Lab, Trbojevic suggested, adding that a preliminary design already exists.


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Contact: Karen McNulty Walsh
kmcnulty@bnl.gov
631-344-8350
DOE/Brookhaven National Laboratory
Source:Eurekalert

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