We proposed a new method of performance evaluation for X-ray CT using visible scintillation light and examined its usefulness in this study. When we scanned a plastic scintillator disk in a gantry opening of the X-ray CT, we could observe visible scintillation light. The rotation of the light-emitting area of the disk corresponded to that of the X-ray tube. We were able to record the scintillation light by digital video camera. By analyzing the area of visible scintillation light, the rotation speed of the X-ray tube, angular spread of the X-ray beam, uniformity of the incident X-rays, and change in X-ray energy were measured. No other method is available to obtain the above parameters of X-ray CT during a single CT scan. In the measurements of the uniformity of incident X-rays and change of X-ray energy, our method showed good accuracy in detecting the attenuation caused by the couch between the X-ray tube and the plastic scintillator disc. The proposed method is inexpensive and easy-to-use. We conclude that the method is a useful tool for performance evaluation as well as a maintenance tool for X-ray CT.
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