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Proceedings Paper

Anode thermal analysis of high power microfocus CNT x-ray tubes for in vivo small animal imaging
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Paper Abstract

Carbon nanotube (CNT) micro-focus x-ray tubes have been demonstrated as a novel technology for in-vivo small animal imaging. It enables simultaneous respiratory and cardiac gated prospective CT imaging of free breathing animals with high temporal resolution. Operating the micro-focus CNT x-ray source at high power is required to achieve high temporal resolution. The thermal loading of the anode focal spot is a limiting factor in determining the maximum power of an x-ray tube. In this paper, we developed a reliable simulation model to quantitatively analyze the anode heat load of the CNT x-ray source operating in both DC and pulse modes. The anode temperature distribution is simulated using finite element analysis. The model is validated by comparing simulation results for the micro-focus x- ray tube with reported experimental results. We investigated the relationship between the maximum power and the effective focal spot size for CNT micro-CT system running in both DC and pulse modes. Our results show that when operating in pulse mode, the maximum power of the CNT x-ray source can be significantly higher than when operating in DC mode. In DC mode, we found that the maximum power scales non-linearly with the effective focal spot size as P(in W) = (0.25/ sin θ+1.6)f0.73 s (in μm), where 1/sin θ is the projection factor for a given anode angle θ. However, in pulse mode the maximum power linearly increases with the effective focal spot size asP(in W) = (0.20/ sin θ+0.35)fs(in μm), and is significantly higher than that in the DC mode. This implies that it is feasible to improve the micro-CT temporal resolution further without sacrificing the image quality. The simulation method developed here also enables us to analyze the thermal loading of the other CNT x-ray sources for other applications, such as the stationary digital breast tomosynthesis scanner and the CNT microbeam radiation therapy system.

Paper Details

Date Published: 2 March 2012
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 8313, Medical Imaging 2012: Physics of Medical Imaging, 83130O (2 March 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.911521
Show Author Affiliations
Jing Shan, The Univ. of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (United States)
Otto Zhou, The Univ. of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (United States)
Jianping Lu, The Univ. of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8313:
Medical Imaging 2012: Physics of Medical Imaging
Norbert J. Pelc; Robert M. Nishikawa; Bruce R. Whiting, Editor(s)

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