Characterization of on-site digital mammography systems: Direct versus indirect conversion detectors
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We investigated the performances of two digital mammography systems. The systems use a cesium-iodide (CsI) scintillator and an amorphous selenium (a-Se) photoconductor for X-ray detection and are installed in the same hospital. As physical metrics, we measured the modulationtransfer function (MTF), the noise-power spectrum (NPS), and the detective quantum efficiency (DQE). In addition, we analyzed the contrast-detail performances of the two systems by using a commercial contrast-detail phantom. The CsI-based indirect conversion detector provided better MTF and DQE performances than the a-Se-based direct conversion detector whereas the former provided a poorer NPS performance than the latter. These results are explained by the fact that the CsI-based detector used an MTF restoration preprocessing algorithm. The a-Se-based detector showed better contrast-detail performance than the CsI-based detector. We believe that the highfrequency noise characteristic of a detector is more responsible for the visibility of small details than its spatial-resolution performance.
KeywordsDigital mammography Cesium iodide Amorphous selenium MTF NPS DQE Contrast
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