Design and fabrication of small phantoms using stereolithography

Mi Ae Park, Robert E. Zimmerman, Joanne T. Vannah, Stephen C. Moore

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

2 Scopus citations


Small-animal imaging is rapidly becoming an essential tool for preclinical development of new compounds for imaging and therapy. Although imaging performance evaluations and regular quality control are both important, surprisingly, there are relatively few appropriate phantoms available for such procedures. Phantoms can also be used with liquid or gel dosimeters for measuring radiation doses in different compartments, as well as cross-doses to other compartments. Both imaging and therapy applications, however, could benefit from phantoms with walls that are thinner than those currently available (∼1 mm). Using high-resolution stereolithography (SL), we produced phantoms with 2-cm-long cold rods or hot channels ranging from 0.5 to 1.0 mm in diameter. Hollow spheres with 3-mm inner diameter were also produced, with wall thickness from 100 to 350 μm. All phantoms were imaged by μCT, with 27μm resolution. SL performance was estimated by measuring the dimensions of many structures in the micro-CT images. We also evaluated the degree of water absorption by two different SL resins, Somos® 11120 and Accura® 40, after curing. The average bias (and precision) of the cold-rod and hot-channel structures over the size range 0.5 to 1.0 mm, were 0.75% (1.93%) and 0.9% (1.92%), respectively. Water absorption by the resins after 4 hours was minimal (0.1 to 0.15% weight change) for both materials; however, after 66 hours in water, the change was greater for Accura® 40 (1.5%) than for Somos® 11120 (0.25%); thus, the latter is a more suitable material for nuclear medicine applications. The μCT images demonstrated that the minimum acceptable spherical wall thickness was ∼150μm; this will allow beta particles from low-energy beta emitters, e.g., Lu-177, Cu-67, or 1-131, to deliver a greater radiation dose to neighboring compartments. SL is a robust and accurate method for fabrication of phantoms with thin walls for small-animal imaging systems and dosimetry measurements.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2007 IEEE Nuclear Science Symposium and Medical Imaging Conference, NSS-MIC
Number of pages3
StatePublished - 2007
Externally publishedYes
Event2007 IEEE Nuclear Science Symposium and Medical Imaging Conference, NSS-MIC - Honolulu, HI, United States
Duration: Oct 27 2007Nov 3 2007

Publication series

NameIEEE Nuclear Science Symposium Conference Record
ISSN (Print)1095-7863


Other2007 IEEE Nuclear Science Symposium and Medical Imaging Conference, NSS-MIC
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityHonolulu, HI

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiation
  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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