Lateral radiation dose distribution at the position of the cell sample measured with radiochromic film. The colour scale is in units of gray and the horizontal scale bar is 1 mm. (Reprinted with permission from Applied Physics Letters 101 243701. Copyright 2012 American Institute of Physics.)

Pulsed lasers could make proton therapy more accessible

Jan 16, 2013

A table-top proton accelerator for medical therapy could be one step closer thanks to work done by physicists in Germany. The team’s system is based on a compact Ti:sapphire laser, which fires ultrashort light pulses at a diamond-like foil to produce bunches of protons with energies of around 5 MeV.

The team has shown that its device delivers radiation doses to biological cells that are similar to doses created by much larger conventional proton-therapy systems. The researchers say that the technique could also be used to study ultrafast processes in biology and chemistry.

Read more: Pulsed lasers could make proton therapy more accessible – physics world.

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