Reference dosimetry in clinical high-energy electron beams: comparison of the AAPM TG-51 and AAPM TG-21 dosimetry protocols.
A comparison of the determination of absorbed dose to water in reference conditions with high-energy electron beams (Enominal of 6, 8, 10, 12, 15, and 18 MeV) following the recommendations given in the AAPM TG-51 and in the original TG-21 dosimetry protocols has been made. Six different ionization chamber types have been used, two Farmer-type cylindrical (PTW 30001, PMMA wall; NE 2571, graphite wall) and four plane parallel (PTW Markus, and Scanditronix-Wellhöfer NACP, PPC-05 and Roos PPC-40). Depending upon the cylindrical chamber type used and the beam energy, the doses at dmax determined with TG-51 were higher than with TG-21 by about 1%-3%. Approximately 1% of this difference is due to the differences in the data given in the two protocols; another 1.1%-1.2% difference is due to the change of standards, from air-kerma to absorbed dose to water. For plane-parallel chambers, absorbed doses were determined by using two chamber calibration methods: (i) direct use of the ADCL calibration factors N(60Co)D,w and Nx for each chamber type in the appropriate equations for dose determination recommended by each protocol, and (ii) cross-calibration techniques in a high-energy electron beam, as recommended by TG-21, TG-39, and TG-51. Depending upon the plane-parallel chamber type used and the beam energy, the doses at dmax determined with TG-51 were higher than with TG-21 by about 0.7%-2.9% for the direct calibration procedures and by 0.8%-3.2% for the cross-calibration techniques. Measured values of photon-electron conversion kecal, for the NACP and Markus chambers were found to be 0.3% higher and 1.7% lower than the corresponding values given in TG-51. For the PPC-05 and PPC-40 (Roos) chamber types, the values of kecal were measured to be 0.889 and 0.893, respectively. The uncertainty for the entire calibration chain, starting from the calibration of the ionization chamber in the standards laboratory to the determination of absorbed dose to water in the user beam, has been analyzed for the two formalisms. For cylindrical chambers, the observed differences between the two protocols are within the estimated combined uncertainty of the ratios of absorbed doses for 6 and 8 MeV; however, at higher energies (10< or =E< or =18 MeV), the differences are larger than the estimated combined uncertainties by about 1%. For plane-parallel chambers, the observed differences are within the estimated combined uncertainties for the direct calibration technique; for the cross-calibration technique the differences are within the uncertainty estimates at low energies whereas they are comparable to the uncertainty estimates at higher energies. A detailed analysis of the reasons for the discrepancies is made which includes comparing the formalisms, correction factors, and quantities in the two protocols, as well as the influence of the implementation of the different standards for chamber calibration.
Saiful Huq, M; Song, H; Andreo, P; Houser, CJ
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