5 years ago

Measurement of track structure parameters of low and medium energy helium and carbon ions in nanometric volumes.

Hilgers G, Rabus H, Bug MU
Ionization cluster size distributions produced in the sensitive volume of an ion-counting wall-less nanodosimeter by monoenergetic carbon ions with energies between 45 MeV and 150 MeV were measured at the TANDEM-ALPI ion accelerator facility complex of the LNL-INFN in Legnaro. Those produced by monoenergetic helium ions with energies between 2 MeV and 20 MeV were measured at the accelerator facilities of PTB and with a 241Am alpha particle source. C3H8 was used as the target gas. The ionization cluster size distributions were measured in narrow beam geometry with the primary beam passing the target volume at specified distances from its centre, and in broad beam geometry with a fan-like primary beam. By applying a suitable drift time window, the effective size of the target volume was adjusted to match the size of a DNA segment. The measured data were compared with the results of simulations obtained with the PTB Monte Carlo code PTra. Before the comparison, the simulated cluster size distributions were corrected with respect to the background of additional ionizations produced in the transport system of the ionized target gas molecules. Measured and simulated characteristics of the particle track structure are in good agreement for both types of primary particles and for both types of the irradiation geometry. As the range in tissue of the ions investigated is within the typical extension of a spread-out Bragg peak, these data are useful for benchmarking not only 'general purpose' track structure simulation codes, but also treatment planning codes used in hadron therapy. Additionally, these data sets may serve as a data base for codes modelling the induction of radiation damages at the DNA-level as they almost completely characterize the ionization component of the nanometric track structure.

Publisher URL: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28895552

DOI: PubMed:28895552

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