Investigation of crystal surface finish and geometry on single LYSO scintillator detector performance for depth-of-interaction measurement with silicon photomultipliers

Chad Bircher, Yiping Shao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Depth of Interaction (DOI) information can improve quality of reconstructed images acquired from Positron Emission Tomography (PET), especially in high resolution and compact scanners dedicated for breast, brain, or small animal imaging applications. Additionally, clinical scanners with time of flight capability can also benefit from DOI information. One of the most promising methods of determining DOI in a crystal involves reading the signal from two ends of a scintillation crystal, and calculating the signal ratio between the two detectors. This method is known to deliver a better DOI resolution with rough crystals compared to highly polished crystals. However, what is still not well studied is how much of a tradeoff is involved between spatial, energy, temporal, and DOI resolutions as a function of the crystal surface treatment and geometry with the use of Silicon Photomultipliers (SiPM) as the photo detectors. This study investigates the effects of different crystal surface finishes and geometries on energy, timing and DOI resolutions at different crystal depths. The results show that for LYSO scintillators of 1.5 x 1.5 x 20 mm3 and 2 x 2 x 20 mm3 with their surfaces finished from 0.5 to 30 mm roughness, almost the same energy and coincidence timing resolutions were maintained, around 15% and 2.4 ns, respectively across different crystal depths, while the DOI resolutions were steadily improved from worse than 5 mm to better than 2 mm. They demonstrate that crystal roughness, with proper surface preparing, does not have a signi.cant effect on the energy and coincidence timing resolutions in the crystals examined, and there does not appear to be a tradeoff between improving DOI resolution and degrading other detector performances. These results will be valuable to guide the selection of crystal surface conditions for developing a DOI measurable PET detector with a full array of LYSO scintillators coupled to SiPM arrays.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)236-243
Number of pages8
JournalNuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research, Section A: Accelerators, Spectrometers, Detectors and Associated Equipment
StatePublished - Nov 21 2012


  • Depth of interaction
  • Gamma ray detector
  • Positron emission tomography
  • Silicon photomultiplier

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Instrumentation


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