Detector lag, or residual signal, in a-Si flat-panel (FP) detectors can cause significant shading artifacts in cone-beam computed tomographyreconstructions. To date, most correction models have assumed a linear, time-invariant (LTI) model and correct lag by deconvolution with an impulse response function (IRF). However, the lag correction is sensitive to both the exposure intensity and the technique used for determining the IRF. Even when the LTI correction that produces the minimum error is found, residual artifact remains. A new non-LTI method was developed to take into account the IRF measurement technique and exposure dependencies.Methods:
First, a multiexponential (N = 4) LTI model was implemented for lag correction. Next, a non-LTI lag correction, known as the nonlinear consistent stored charge (NLCSC) method, was developed based on the LTI multiexponential method. It differs from other nonlinear lag correction algorithms in that it maintains a consistent estimate of the amount of charge stored in the FP and it does not require intimate knowledge of the semiconductor parameters specific to the FP. For the NLCSC method, all coefficients of the IRF are functions of exposure intensity. Another nonlinear lag correction method that only used an intensity weighting of the IRF was also compared. The correction algorithms were applied to step-response projection data and CT acquisitions of a large pelvic phantom and an acrylic head phantom. The authors collected rising and falling edge step-response data on a Varian 4030CB a-Si FP detector operating in dynamic gain mode at 15 fps at nine incident exposures (2.0%–92% of the detector saturation exposure). For projection data, 1st and 50th frame lag were measured before and after correction. For the CT reconstructions, five pairs of ROIs were defined and the maximum and mean signal differences within a pair were calculated for the different exposures and step-response edge techniques.Results:
The LTI corrections left residual 1st and 50th frame lag up to 1.4% and 0.48%, while the NLCSC lag correction reduced 1st and 50th frame residual lags to less than 0.29% and 0.0052%. For CT reconstructions, the NLCSC lag correction gave an average error of 11 HU for the pelvic phantom and 3 HU for the head phantom, compared to 14–19 HU and 2–11 HU for the LTI corrections and 15 HU and 9 HU for the intensity weighted non-LTI algorithm. The maximum ROI error was always smallest for the NLCSC correction. The NLCSC correction was also superior to the intensity weighting algorithm.Conclusions:
The NLCSC lag algorithm corrected for the exposure dependence of lag, provided superior image improvement for the pelvic phantom reconstruction, and gave similar results to the best case LTI results for the head phantom. The blurred ring artifact that is left over in the LTI corrections was better removed by the NLCSC correction in all cases.
This work was supported in part by “Varian Medical Systems, the Stanford-NIH Biotechnology Traineeship,” National Institutes of Health (NIH) Grant Nos. EB003524 and 1 R01HL087917, and the Lucas Foundation.
II. METHODS AND MATERIALS
II.A. LTI lag theory
II.A.1. Estimated stored charge
II.B. NLCSC lag algorithm
II.B.1. Stored charge constraint
II.B.2. Exposure-dependent lag coefficients: b n (x)
II.B.3. Exposure-dependent lag rates: a n (x)
II.C. Weighting only non-LTI
II.D. Calibration of lag correction algorithm
II.E.1. Step-response measurements
II.E.2. CBCT measurements
III.A. Calibration of lag correction algorithm
III.B.1. Step-response measurements
III.B.2. CBCT measurements
IV. DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSIONS
- Cone beam computed tomography
- Amorphous semiconductors
- Image reconstruction
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