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23 March 2010 Design and construction of a micro-focus in-line phase-contrast cone-beam CT (PC-CBCT) system for soft tissue imaging
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In recent years, the in-line phase-contrast (in-line PC) technique has been implemented using synchrotrons and microfocus x-ray tubes for soft tissue imaging as the in-line PC's image quality enhancement. In this study, a new in-line phase-contrast cone-beam CT (PC-CBCT) system has been designed and tested in our lab to produce higher image quality enhancement. The PC-CBCT system consists of a micro-focus x-ray tube, a high-resolution detector and a rotating phantom holder. The nominal focal spot size is 9 microns, which is expected to produce partially coherent x-rays. The detector system has a phosphor screen, an optical fiber coupling unit and a CMOS chip with an effective pixel pitch of 22.5 microns. Some key system parameters, including tube voltage (or x-ray spectrum), source-to-object distance and object-to-detector distance were balanced and optimized to achieve enough spatial coherence and degree of interference to acquire edge-enhanced phase-contrast images as projection images. The phantom holder was rotated for 360 degrees with a step of 1.2 degrees, and during the rotation in-line PC images were acquired at all angular positions. The FDK algorithm was applied to compute the reconstruction using the edge-enhanced PC images. Small soft tissue samples (breast tissues and animal organs) were scanned and reconstructed. The tomographic images showed enhanced structure edges and details.
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Weixing Cai and Ruola Ning "Design and construction of a micro-focus in-line phase-contrast cone-beam CT (PC-CBCT) system for soft tissue imaging", Proc. SPIE 7622, Medical Imaging 2010: Physics of Medical Imaging, 76225F (23 March 2010);

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