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Oct 20, 2021

Highlights Day Four: IEEE NSS-MIC RTSD 2021

- By York Haemisch

Dr York Haemisch, our Director Medical and Research Markets, reports from this year’s virtual IEEE Nuclear Science Symposium and Medical Imaging Conference and 28th International Symposium on Room-Temperature Semiconductor Detectors.

Day three and the Room-Temperature Semiconductor Detectors (RTSD) side of the conference got up to speed with three consecutive sessions.

Session one focused on the features and properties of CdZnTe (CZT) in spectroscopic and backscatter applications, before moving onto more “exotic” materials such as GaAs, TlBr and diamond.

The second RTSD session was dedicated to the growth and characterisation of new Perovskite-based detector materials that could potentially complement or even replace CdTe, either because of superior performance or the lower costs of fabrication, or for both reasons. Unfortunately, none of the materials or concepts presented seemed ready for a large scale industrial application, and so for the time being, there is nothing that competes with CdTe, especially in terms of practical use in large scale production. However, the search for new materials is essential for the evolution of the field and will, I am sure, one day yield one or more candidates for larger scale applications. The history of scintillation materials development has led to the use of BGO or LSO which complemented and/or partially replaced the iodine based scintillators.

The trio of RTSD presentations concluded with a poster session that further elaborated on the fabrication and characterisation of new direct converting detector materials.

My highlight of the day, however,  was an engaging and highly pertinent contribution to the MIC conference strand by Professor Masaaki Sato, of the Transplantation Center of the University of Tokyo, titled: Observation, Inspection, and Visualisation: a Surgeon’s Viewpoint. Professor Sato described the challenges he faces in his daily, surgical practice because of the limitations of imaging and went on to encourage the audience to continue to strive for new approaches, ending with the imperative, “Make invisible things visible!”

I always look forward to the granting of the awards, which is a feature of the MIC plenaries, in particular the prestigious Edward J. Hoffman Medical Scientist award and the Marie Sklodowska-Curie award.

This year the Hoffman award went to Professor Michael Kinahan of the University of Washington in Seattle for his lifetime contributions to imaging science and education, and to Professor Michael Defrise from Vrjie Universitet Brussels for his fundamental work on solving image reconstruction challenges. As I enjoy the privilege of knowing both of the awardees personally I would like to extend my congratulations on their remarkable achievements also from this place.

Follow Direct Conversion News for more reports from Dr York Haemisch.