Use of an amorphous silicon EPID for measuring MLC calibration at varying gantry angle.
Field junctions between megavoltage photon beams are important in modern radiotherapy for treatments such as head and neck and breast cancer. An electronic portal imaging device (EPID) may be used to study junction dose between two megavoltage X-ray fields. In this study, the junction dose was used to determine machine characteristics such as jaw positions and their reproducibility, collimator rotation and the effect of gantry rotation. All measurements were done on Varian linear accelerators with EPID (Varian, Palo Alto, CA). The results show reproducibility in jaw positions of approximately 0.3 mm for repeated jaw placement while EPID readings were reproducible within a standard deviation of 0.4% for fixed jaw positions. Junction dose also allowed collimator rotation error of 0.1° to be observed. Dependence of junction dose on gantry rotation due to gravity was observed; the gravity effect being maximum at 180° gantry angle (beam pointing up). EPIDs were found to be reliable tools for checking field junctions, which in turn may be used to check jaw reproducibility and collimator rotation of linacs.