Bremsstrahlung spectra from thick targets of Al and Pb have been measured absolutely (photons per incident electron) along the beam axis for electrons of 10-, 15-, 20-, 25-, and 30-MeV incident energy. The spectra have a 220-keV low-energy cutoff. The targets were cylinders with nominal thicknesses of 110% of the electron CSDA range. A thin transmission detector, calibrated against a toroidal current monitor, was placed upstream of the target to measure the beam current. The spectrometer was a 20-cm diameter by 25-cm-long cylindrical Nal detector. Measured spectra were corrected for pile-up, background, detector response, detector efficiency, attenuation in materials between the target and detector and the collimator effect. Spectra were calculated using the EGS4 Monte Carlo system for simulating the radiation transport. The simulation model included the small amount of material upstream of the target. This material contributed about 40% of the spectrum, but its presence or absence had little effect on the calculated bremsstrahlung yield. The shapes of the measured and calculated spectra were in excellent agreement. The ratio of the total number of photons in each measured spectrum to those in the corresponding calculated spectrum varied from 0.97 + 0.06 to 1.12 + 0.06, depending largely on the atomic number of the target. Absolute spectral measurements in the literature agreed with our calculations of spectral shape but showed a range of ± 30% in the number of photons per incident electron relative to the calculated values, which is contrary to our result.

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Keywords absolute thick-target bremsstrahlung bremsstrahlung Nal spectrometry, radiotherapy Monte Carlo
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Journal Medical Physics
Faddegon, B.A. (Bruce A.), Ross, C.K., & Rogers, D.W.O. (1990). Forward-directed bremsstrahlung of 10- to 30-MeV electrons incident on thick targets of Al and Pb. Medical Physics, 17(5), 773–785. doi:10.1118/1.596560