TAP 534- 2: Making PET scans Making PET scans

TAP 534- 2: Making PET scans
Making PET scans
A pair of gamma rays are emitted in opposite
directions as a result of electron/positron
annihilation inside the patient
Scintillator – captures gamma ray
photon and emits lower energy
photons into photomultiplier tubes
signal processing
Photomultiplier –
incoming photon creates
a cascade of electrons,
giving an electrical pulse
One pair of detectors will
respond almost
simultaneously. This near
coincidence shows that
the two gamma rays came
from a common source.
The tiny time difference
between the two signals
is then used to work out
where they came from
along the line between the
Scintillators are arranged
in a grid on the inside
surface of the scanner. In
any short period of time
many detectors will
respond to gamma rays
from many different
annihilations inside the
body. A computer
produces a slice-by-slice
map of activity in the brain.
Practical advice
This diagram is reproduced here so that you can discuss it with your class.
External reference
This activity is taken from Advancing Physics chapter 17, 20O