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    Keywords: ENERGIES ; IRRADIATION ; radiotherapy ; CLINICAL-TRIAL ; COMBINATION ; Germany ; THERAPY ; imaging ; SUPPORT ; SYSTEM ; SYSTEMS ; PATIENT ; IONS ; treatment ; PROTON ; TRIAL ; TRIALS ; DISTRIBUTIONS ; IN-SITU ; ENERGY ; CLINICAL-TRIALS ; BEAM ; DELIVERY ; positron emission tomography ; POSITRON-EMISSION-TOMOGRAPHY ; INTENSITY-MODULATED RADIOTHERAPY ; PET ; CONSTRUCTION ; EUROPE ; OXYGEN ; SECTIONS ; INSITU ; radiology ; WORLDWIDE ; CAPACITY ; THERAPIES ; DOSE DISTRIBUTIONS ; LIBRARIES ; beam scanning ; charged particle ; clinical trials ; heavy ion ; ion gantry ; SCANNING SYSTEM
    Abstract: The ion beam therapy facility presently under construction at the Department of Clinical Radiology, University of Heidelberg, Germany, will be the first dedicated and hospital-based irradiation facility for protons and heavier ions in Europe. A capacity of more than 1000 patient treatments per year is planned. The facility comprises two horizontally-fixed beamlines for patient treatments plus a fixed-beam experimental area. In addition, the world-wide first scanning ion gantry is under construction. The facility fully relies on an active beam delivery method, the intensity-controlled rasterscan technique. The availability of different ion species ranging from protons to oxygen under identical conditions optimally supports clinical trials aiming to clarify the question of which particle species is best suited for the individual indications. A linac-synchrotron combination will deliver libraries of energy-, focus- and intensity-variable pencil-beams for each ion species to the dose-delivering scanning systems at each treatment station. The available energies correspond to water-equivalent ranges from 2 cm to 30 cm. The intensity-controlled rasterscan technique allows for the administration of inversely planned and biologically optimized dose distributions having utmost precision. The facility will be equipped with state-of-the-art imaging modalities as well as an in-situ Positron-Emission-Tomography (PET). The commissioning of the different sections is scheduled for 2006. The pre-clinical operation will start early in 2007 followed by the routine patient treatment
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
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