MicroPET: A high resolution PET scanner for imaging small animals

S. R. Cherry, Y. Shao, R. W. Silverman, K. Meadors, S. Siegel, A. Chatziioannou, J. W. Young, W. F. Jones, J. C. Moyers, D. Newport, A. Boutefnouchet, T. H. Farquhar, M. Andreaco, M. J. Paulus, D. M. Binkley, R. Nutt, M. E. Phelps

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

528 Scopus citations


MicroPET is a high resolution positron emission tomography (PET) scanner designed for imaging small laboratory animals. It consists of a ring of 30 positionsensitive scintillation detectors, each with an 8 x 8 array of small lutetium oxyorthosilicate (LSO) crystals coupled via optical fibers to a multi-channel photomultiplier tube. The detectors have an intrinsic resolution averaging 1.68 mm, an energy resolution between 15 and 25% and 2.4 ns timing resolution at 511 keV. The detector ring diameter of microPET is 17.2 cm with an imaging field of view of 112 mm transaxially by 18 mm axially. The scanner has no septa and operates exclusively in 3D mode. Reconstructed image resolution 1 cm from the center of the scanner is 2.0 mm and virtually isotropic, yielding a volume resolution of 8 mm3. For comparison, the volume resolution of state-of-the-art clinical PET systems is in the range of 50 - 75 mnA Initial images of phantoms have been acquired and are reported. A computer controlled bed is under construction and will incorporate a small wobble motion to improve spatial sampling. This is projected to further enhance spatial resolution. MicroPET is the first PET scanner to incorporate the new scintillator LSO and to our knowledge is the highest resolution multi-ring PET scanner currently in existence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1161-1166
Number of pages6
JournalIEEE Transactions on Nuclear Science
Issue number3 PART 2
StatePublished - 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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