Development and optimisation of grid inserts for a preclinical radiotherapy system and corresponding Monte Carlo beam simulations

Marcus Fisk, Pejman Rowshanfarzad, David Pfefferlé, Matthew Fernandez de Viana, Julian Cabrera, Martin Andrew Ebert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To Develop a physical grid collimator compatible with the X-RAD preclinical radiotherapy system and create a corresponding Monte Carlo (MC) model. 

Approach: This work presents a methodology for the fabrication of a grid collimator designed for utilisation on the X-RAD preclinical radiotherapy system. Additionally, a MC simulation of the grid is developed, which is compatible with the X-RAD treatment planning system. The grid was manufactured by casting a low melting point alloy, cerrobend, into a silicone mould. The silicone was moulded around a 3D-printed replica of the grid, enabling the production of diverging holes with precise radii and spacing. A MC simulation was conducted on an equivalent 3D grid model and validated using 11 layers of GAFChromic EBT-3 film interspersed in a 3D-printed water-equivalent phantom. A 3D dose distribution was constructed from the film layers, enabling a direct comparison with the MC Simulation.

Main results: The film and the MC dose distribution demonstrated a gamma passing rate of 99% for a 1%, 0.5mm criteria with a 10% threshold applied. The peak-to-valley dose ratio (PVDR) and output factor at the surface were determined to be 20.4 and 0.79, respectively.

Significance: The pairing of the grid collimator with a MC simulation can significantly enhance the practicality of grid therapy on the X-RAD. This combination enables further exploration of the biological implications of grid therapy, supported by a knowledge of the complex dose distributions. Moreover, this methodology can be adapted for use in other systems and scenarios.
Original languageEnglish
Article number055010
JournalPhysics in Medicine & Biology
Issue number5
Early online dateFeb 2024
Publication statusPublished - 7 Mar 2024


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