Relating ionization quenching in organic plastic scintillators to basic material properties by modelling excitation density transport and amorphous track structure during proton irradiation

Jeppe Brage Christensen*, Claus E. Andersen

*Corresponding author for this work

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    Abstract

    Ionization quenching in organic scintillators is usually corrected with methods that require careful assessment of the response relative to that of an ionization chamber. Here, we present a framework to compute ionization quenching correction factors (QCFs) from first principles for organic plastic scintillators exposed to ions. The tool solves the kinetic Blanc equation, of which the Birks model is a simplified solution, based on amorphous track structures models. As a consequence, ionization quenching correction factors can be calculated relying only on standard, tabulated scintillator material properties such as the density, light yield, and decay time. The tool is validated against experimentally obtained QCFs for two different organic plastic scintillators irradiated with protons with linear energy transfers (LETs) between 5 and 70 MeVcm-1. The QCFs computed from amorphous track structure models and the BC-400 scintillator properties deviate less than 3% from the Birks model for LETs below 45 MeVcm-1 and less than 5% for higher LETs. The agreement between experiments and the software for the BCF-12 scintillator is within 2% for LETs below 45 MeVcm-1 and within 10% for LETs above, comparable to the experimental uncertainties. The framework is compiled into the open source software ExcitonQuenching available for download. ExcitonQuenching enables computations of QCFs in organic plastic scintillators exposed to ions independently of experimentally based quenching parameters in contrast to the Birks model. ExcitonQuenching can improve the accuracy of correction factors and understanding of ionization quenching in scintillator dosimetry.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number195010
    JournalPhysics in Medicine and Biology
    Volume63
    Issue number19
    Number of pages11
    ISSN0031-9155
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2018

    Keywords

    • Ionization quenching
    • Organic scintillators
    • Proton therapy
    • Quenching kinetics
    • Dosimetry

    Cite this

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    title = "Relating ionization quenching in organic plastic scintillators to basic material properties by modelling excitation density transport and amorphous track structure during proton irradiation",
    abstract = "Ionization quenching in organic scintillators is usually corrected with methods that require careful assessment of the response relative to that of an ionization chamber. Here, we present a framework to compute ionization quenching correction factors (QCFs) from first principles for organic plastic scintillators exposed to ions. The tool solves the kinetic Blanc equation, of which the Birks model is a simplified solution, based on amorphous track structures models. As a consequence, ionization quenching correction factors can be calculated relying only on standard, tabulated scintillator material properties such as the density, light yield, and decay time. The tool is validated against experimentally obtained QCFs for two different organic plastic scintillators irradiated with protons with linear energy transfers (LETs) between 5 and 70 MeVcm-1. The QCFs computed from amorphous track structure models and the BC-400 scintillator properties deviate less than 3{\%} from the Birks model for LETs below 45 MeVcm-1 and less than 5{\%} for higher LETs. The agreement between experiments and the software for the BCF-12 scintillator is within 2{\%} for LETs below 45 MeVcm-1 and within 10{\%} for LETs above, comparable to the experimental uncertainties. The framework is compiled into the open source software ExcitonQuenching available for download. ExcitonQuenching enables computations of QCFs in organic plastic scintillators exposed to ions independently of experimentally based quenching parameters in contrast to the Birks model. ExcitonQuenching can improve the accuracy of correction factors and understanding of ionization quenching in scintillator dosimetry.",
    keywords = "Ionization quenching, Organic scintillators, Proton therapy, Quenching kinetics, Dosimetry",
    author = "Christensen, {Jeppe Brage} and Andersen, {Claus E.}",
    year = "2018",
    doi = "10.1088/1361-6560/aadf2d",
    language = "English",
    volume = "63",
    journal = "Physics in Medicine and Biology",
    issn = "0031-9155",
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    }

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - Relating ionization quenching in organic plastic scintillators to basic material properties by modelling excitation density transport and amorphous track structure during proton irradiation

    AU - Christensen, Jeppe Brage

    AU - Andersen, Claus E.

    PY - 2018

    Y1 - 2018

    N2 - Ionization quenching in organic scintillators is usually corrected with methods that require careful assessment of the response relative to that of an ionization chamber. Here, we present a framework to compute ionization quenching correction factors (QCFs) from first principles for organic plastic scintillators exposed to ions. The tool solves the kinetic Blanc equation, of which the Birks model is a simplified solution, based on amorphous track structures models. As a consequence, ionization quenching correction factors can be calculated relying only on standard, tabulated scintillator material properties such as the density, light yield, and decay time. The tool is validated against experimentally obtained QCFs for two different organic plastic scintillators irradiated with protons with linear energy transfers (LETs) between 5 and 70 MeVcm-1. The QCFs computed from amorphous track structure models and the BC-400 scintillator properties deviate less than 3% from the Birks model for LETs below 45 MeVcm-1 and less than 5% for higher LETs. The agreement between experiments and the software for the BCF-12 scintillator is within 2% for LETs below 45 MeVcm-1 and within 10% for LETs above, comparable to the experimental uncertainties. The framework is compiled into the open source software ExcitonQuenching available for download. ExcitonQuenching enables computations of QCFs in organic plastic scintillators exposed to ions independently of experimentally based quenching parameters in contrast to the Birks model. ExcitonQuenching can improve the accuracy of correction factors and understanding of ionization quenching in scintillator dosimetry.

    AB - Ionization quenching in organic scintillators is usually corrected with methods that require careful assessment of the response relative to that of an ionization chamber. Here, we present a framework to compute ionization quenching correction factors (QCFs) from first principles for organic plastic scintillators exposed to ions. The tool solves the kinetic Blanc equation, of which the Birks model is a simplified solution, based on amorphous track structures models. As a consequence, ionization quenching correction factors can be calculated relying only on standard, tabulated scintillator material properties such as the density, light yield, and decay time. The tool is validated against experimentally obtained QCFs for two different organic plastic scintillators irradiated with protons with linear energy transfers (LETs) between 5 and 70 MeVcm-1. The QCFs computed from amorphous track structure models and the BC-400 scintillator properties deviate less than 3% from the Birks model for LETs below 45 MeVcm-1 and less than 5% for higher LETs. The agreement between experiments and the software for the BCF-12 scintillator is within 2% for LETs below 45 MeVcm-1 and within 10% for LETs above, comparable to the experimental uncertainties. The framework is compiled into the open source software ExcitonQuenching available for download. ExcitonQuenching enables computations of QCFs in organic plastic scintillators exposed to ions independently of experimentally based quenching parameters in contrast to the Birks model. ExcitonQuenching can improve the accuracy of correction factors and understanding of ionization quenching in scintillator dosimetry.

    KW - Ionization quenching

    KW - Organic scintillators

    KW - Proton therapy

    KW - Quenching kinetics

    KW - Dosimetry

    U2 - 10.1088/1361-6560/aadf2d

    DO - 10.1088/1361-6560/aadf2d

    M3 - Journal article

    VL - 63

    JO - Physics in Medicine and Biology

    JF - Physics in Medicine and Biology

    SN - 0031-9155

    IS - 19

    M1 - 195010

    ER -