Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Developing radically new technologies for X-ray systems

04.02.2015

Siemens is investigating entirely new concepts for X-ray systems. The aim is to achieve a radical increase in imaging resolution and to enable phase-contrast X-ray imaging. This entirely new technique helps, for instance, in the identification of tumors.

Moreover, examinations involving cardiovascular diseases can be carried out without contrast agents. Nearly one out of ten patients suffer from allergic reactions to these substances. A multi-year R&D project, which is scheduled to run until 2017, brings together experts from Siemens Healthcare und Corporate Technology and includes external partners. An article on this subject is now available on the online magazine "Pictures of the Future".

Instead of emitting electrons from 2,000-degree Celsius filaments as usual, the project's researchers are using a ring-shaped "cold cathode" of nanostructured carbon that operates at a high voltage and at room temperature. As is the case today, electrons are accelerated and collide with a target.

This target, however, is not the usual tungsten anode, which only converts about one percent of incoming energy into X-rays. The new conepts foresees of a jet of liquid metal as the new target. The metal consists of 95 percent lithium and 5 percent heavy elements such as bismuth or lanthanum. The latter produces short wavelength X-rays, the former acts as a coolant.

The energy of electrons leaving the liquid-metal-jet anode can potentially be reclaimed. The result is that the X-ray tube requires less than half the electricity and cooling of previous devices.

20-fold higher imaging resolution

The new tube can achieve a much higher energy density at the target. At the same light intensity, the focus of the new X-ray source is 400 times smaller than in conventional X-ray tubes, which results in a 20-fold higher imaging resolution. That, in turn, is the prerequisite for an entirely new imaging technique: phase-contrast X-ray imaging.

Whereas conventional radiography simply records whether X-rays penetrate certain tissue or not, phase-contrast imaging measures the influence of the tissue on the phase of the X-ray beam. This phase shift varies depending on the refractive power of the tissue through which the radiation passes. This approach would make it possible to distinguish different soft tissues, in particular fat from water or iron levels in blood.

This is essential, for instance, in order to easily identify a tumor in an early stage. Blood vessels could be made visible in this way without contrast agents. To be able to measure these phase shifts, Siemens is using for the first time a wavefront sensor of the kind used in optics and astronomy for X-ray light.

Siemens' next-generation X-ray systems would not only be very efficient to operate and would offer better performance, but would be ideal for minimally invasive surgery. Surgeons performing procedures inside the body via catheter would use X-ray imaging to know exactly where the catheter was located. If the catheter were navigated using magnetic fields, conventional X-ray tubes would not be used because they are sensitive to magnetic fields. The new systems would not have this drawback, but would be able to provide images that would be more useful diagnostically.

Weitere Informationen:

http://www.siemens.com/innovationnews

Dr. Norbert Aschenbrenner | Siemens InnovationNews

More articles from Medical Engineering:

nachricht Biocompatible 3-D tracking system has potential to improve robot-assisted surgery
17.02.2017 | Children's National Health System

nachricht Real-time MRI analysis powered by supercomputers
17.02.2017 | University of Texas at Austin, Texas Advanced Computing Center

All articles from Medical Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Switched-on DNA

20.02.2017 | Materials Sciences

Second cause of hidden hearing loss identified

20.02.2017 | Health and Medicine

Prospect for more effective treatment of nerve pain

20.02.2017 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>