Determination of Initial Beam Parameters of Varian 2100 CD Linac for Various Therapeutic Electrons Using PRIMO


The aim of the present research was to establish primary characteristics of electron beams for a Varian 2100C/D linear accelerator with recently developed PRIMO Monte Carlo software and to verify relations between electron energy and dose distribution. To maintain conformity of simulated and measured dose curves within 1%/1mm, mean energy, Full Width at Half Maximum (FWHM) of energy and focal spot FWHM of initial beam were changed iteratively. Mean and most probable energies were extracted from validated phase spaces and compared with related empirical equation results. To explain the importance of correct estimation of primary energy on a clinical case, computed tomography images of a thorax phantom were imported in PRIMO. Dose distributions and dose volume histogram (DVH) curves were compared between validated and artificial cases with overestimated energy. Initial mean energies were obtained of 6.68, 9.73, 13.2 and 16.4 MeV for 6, 9, 12 and 15 nominal energies, respectively. Energy FWHM reduced with increase in energy. Three mm focal spot FWHM for 9 MeV and 4 mm for other energies made proper matches of simulated and measured profiles. In addition, the maximum difference of calculated mean electrons energy at the phantom surface with empirical equation was 2.2 percent. Finally, clear differences in DVH curves of validated and artificial energy were observed as heterogeneity indexes were 0.15 for 7.21 MeV and 0.25 for 6.68 MeV. The Monte Carlo model presented in PRIMO for Varian 2100 CD was precisely validated. IAEA polynomial equations estimated mean energy more accurately than a known linear one. Small displacement of R50 changed DVH curves and homogeneity indexes. PRIMO is a user-friendly software which has suitable capabilities to calculate dose distribution in water phantoms or computerized tomographic volumes accurately.