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[en] Since the Medipix system is a photon counting system with selectable threshold, it is possible to use it as a spectroscopic device, which is sensitive to the energy of the incoming photons. One feature of the Medipix system is the possibility to adjust the threshold for each pixel by a three-bit mask. A simple method for creating threshold equalisation masks for different threshold settings including both detector and channel stability influences is proposed. The method is suitable for systems using X-ray sources with a wide energy range, since the threshold adjustment is energy dependent. This is an alternative to the well-known method for correction of non-uniformity, which uses mono energetic sources. The proposed method is based on the analysis of histograms of series of images. The model for the histograms was created assuming a standard dental X-ray source, which allows mask-creating parameters such as threshold range to be found. This procedure can be performed for each of the energies of interest. Based on these arrays, mask files that narrowed the threshold distribution close to the theoretical limit, were prepared. The limit of the spectroscopic resolution for the system was measured by analysing histograms for a series of flat images under identical conditions
[en] An energy sensitive imaging system like Medipix1 has proved to be promising in distinguishing different materials in an X-ray image of an object. We propose a general method utilising X-ray energy information for material recognition. For objects where the thickness of the materials is unknown, a convenient material parameter to identify is K=α1/α2, which is the ratio of the logarithms of the measured transmissions ln(t1)/ln(t2). If a database of the parameter K for different materials and energies is created, this method can be used for material recognition independent of the thickness of the materials. Series of images of an object consisting of aluminium and silicon were taken with different energy thresholds. The X-ray absorption for silicon and aluminium is very similar for the range 40-60 keV and only differs for lower energies. The results show that it is possible to distinguish between aluminium and silicon on images achieved by Medipix1 using a standard dental source. By decreasing the spatial resolution a better contrast between the materials was achieved. The resolution of contrasts shown by the histograms was close to the limit of the system due to the statistical noise of the signal
[en] The charge transport and X-ray photon absorption in three-dimensional (3D) X-ray pixel detectors have been studied using numerical simulations. The charge transport has been modelled using the drift-diffusion simulator MEDICI, while photon absorption has been studied using MCNP. The response of the entire pixel detector system in terms of charge sharing, line spread function and modulation transfer function, has been simulated using a system level Monte Carlo simulation approach. A major part of the study is devoted to the effect of charge sharing on the energy resolution in 3D-pixel detectors. The 3D configuration was found to suppress charge sharing much better than conventional planar detectors
[en] The spatial resolution of scintillator-coated X-ray pixel detectors is usually limited by the isotropic light spread in the scintillator. One way to overcome this limitation is to use a pixellated scintillating layer on top of the semiconductor pixel detector. Using advanced etching and filling techniques, arrays of CsI columns have been successfully fabricated and characterized. Each CsI waveguide matches one pixel of the semiconductor detector, limiting the spatial spread of light. Another concept considered in this study is to detect the light emitted from the scintillator by diodes formed in the silicon pore walls. There is so far no knowledge regarding the theoretical limits for these two approaches, which makes the evaluation of the fabrication process difficult. In this work we present numerical calculations of the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) for detector designs based on scintillator-filled pores in silicon. The calculations are based on separate Monte Carlo (MC) simulations of X-ray absorption and light transport in scintillator waveguides. The resulting data are used in global MC simulations of flood exposures of the detector array, from which the SNR values are obtained. Results are presented for two scintillator materials, namely CsI(Tl) and GADOX
[en] This work proposes an efficient circuit implementation of a mechanism for charge-sharing suppression in photon-counting pixel arrays based on current-mode circuits for the analog parts. The additional circuits needed for charge-sharing suppression in a four-pixel cluster, leads to an increase in power consumption of 36% and only a marginal increase in circuit area. The implemented pixel which window-discrimination, managing charge-sharing in a four-pixel cluster and with an event-counter of 13 bits, consists of 300 transistors and has a power consumption of 2.7 μw when idle. It is implemented in a 120 nm CMOS process and the presented results are based on simulations. (Author)
[en] The image forming process in a CdTe detector is both a function of the X-ray interaction in the material, including scattering and fluorescence, and the charge transport in the material. The response to individual photons has been investigated using a CdTe detector with a pixel size of 110μm, bonded to a TIMEPIX readout chip operating in time over threshold mode. The device has been illuminated with mono-energetic photons generated by fluorescence in different metals and by gamma emission from 241Am and 137Cs. Each interaction will result in charge distributed in a cluster of pixels where the total charge in the cluster should sum up to the initial photon energy. By looking at the individual clusters the response from shared photons as well as fluorescence photons can be identified and separated. By using energies below and above the K-edges of Cd and Te the contribution from fluorescence can be further isolated. The response is analyzed to investigate the effects of both charge diffusion and fluorescence on the spectral response in the detector.
[en] X-ray imaging has been used extensively in the manufacturing industry. In the paper and paperboard industry X-ray imaging has been used for measuring parameters such as coat weight, using mean values of X-ray absorption inline in the manufacturing machines. Recently, an interest has surfaced to image paperboard coating with pixel resolved images showing material distribution in the coating on the paperboard, and to do this inline in the paper machine. Naturally, imaging with pixel resolution in an application where the paperboard web travels with velocities in the order of 10 m/s sets harsh demands on the X-ray source and the detector system to be used. This paper presents a scanning imaging method for single photon imaging systems that lower the demands on the source flux by hundreds of times, enabling a system to be developed for high velocity industrial measurement applications. The paper presents the imaging method, a discussion of system limitations, simulations and real measurements in a laboratory environment with a moving test object of low velocity, all to verify the potential and limits of the proposed method
[en] Simulations in Medici are performed to quantify crosstalk and charge sharing in a hybrid pixelated silicon detector. Crosstalk and charge sharing degrades the spatial and spectral resolution of single photon processing X-ray imaging systems. For typical medical X-ray imaging applications, the process is dominated by charge sharing between the pixels in the sensor. For heavier particles each impact generates a large amount of charge and the simulation seems to over predict the charge collection efficiency. This indicates that some type of non modelled degradation of the charge transport efficiency exists, like the plasma effect where the plasma might shield the generated charges from the electric field and hence distorts the charge transport process. Based on the simulations it can be reasoned that saturation of the amplifiers in the Timepix system might generate crosstalk that increases the charge spread measured from ion impact on the sensor
[en] Spectral X-ray imaging with single photon processing detectors gains substantial interest for many applications. In this paper we discuss fundamental parameters as contrast to noise ratio (CNR) and spectral response as a function of the material in the object. Image properties have been simulated for different photon energies using MCNP5, assuming an ideal detector with 32 × 32 pixels. Simulations are supported by experimental results obtained with detectors from the MEDIPIX family. The CNR is strongly dependent on the number of incident photons and the number of photons absorbed in the object. The requirement for substantial absorption in the object limits the range of useful photon energies. In most cases the CNR is improved when high energy photons are removed from the spectrum. Materials can be uniquely identified or layers of different materials can be separated provided that there is a substantial difference in their spectral X-ray absorption. In most cases an absorption edge in the spectrum is needed to obtain good results. Several examples of material identification and material separation are discussed.