2 March 2012 Anode thermal analysis of high power microfocus CNT x-ray tubes for in vivo small animal imaging
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Carbon nanotube (CNT) micro-focus x-ray tubes have been demonstrated as a novel technology for in-vivo small animal imaging. It enables simultaneous respiratory and cardiac gated prospective CT imaging of free breathing animals with high temporal resolution. Operating the micro-focus CNT x-ray source at high power is required to achieve high temporal resolution. The thermal loading of the anode focal spot is a limiting factor in determining the maximum power of an x-ray tube. In this paper, we developed a reliable simulation model to quantitatively analyze the anode heat load of the CNT x-ray source operating in both DC and pulse modes. The anode temperature distribution is simulated using finite element analysis. The model is validated by comparing simulation results for the micro-focus x- ray tube with reported experimental results. We investigated the relationship between the maximum power and the effective focal spot size for CNT micro-CT system running in both DC and pulse modes. Our results show that when operating in pulse mode, the maximum power of the CNT x-ray source can be significantly higher than when operating in DC mode. In DC mode, we found that the maximum power scales non-linearly with the effective focal spot size as P(in W) = (0.25/ sin θ+1.6)f0.73 s (in μm), where 1/sin θ is the projection factor for a given anode angle θ. However, in pulse mode the maximum power linearly increases with the effective focal spot size asP(in W) = (0.20/ sin θ+0.35)fs(in μm), and is significantly higher than that in the DC mode. This implies that it is feasible to improve the micro-CT temporal resolution further without sacrificing the image quality. The simulation method developed here also enables us to analyze the thermal loading of the other CNT x-ray sources for other applications, such as the stationary digital breast tomosynthesis scanner and the CNT microbeam radiation therapy system.
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Jing Shan, Jing Shan, Otto Zhou, Otto Zhou, Jianping Lu, Jianping Lu, "Anode thermal analysis of high power microfocus CNT x-ray tubes for in vivo small animal imaging", Proc. SPIE 8313, Medical Imaging 2012: Physics of Medical Imaging, 83130O (2 March 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.911521; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.911521

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