The effective atomic number, Z(eff), has been calculated for fatty acids and cysteine. It is shown that Z(eff) is a useful parameter for low-Z materials at any energy above 1 key. Absorption edges of medium-Z elements may complicate the energy dependence of Z(eff) below 10 key. The notion of Z(eff) is perhaps most useful at energies where Compton scattering is dominating, and where Z(eff) is equal to the mean atomic number, <Z >, over a wide energy range around 1 MeV.
- Photon-interaction cross-sections
- Effective atomic number