Need for Speed in Scintillation Detectors

Dennis Schaart_1_s

Dennis R. Schaart, PhD
Head, Medical Physics & Technology
Delft University of Technology

MON, 10/16/2023 - 3:00PM TO 4:00PM


Remarkable progress is being made in the development of ultrafast scintillation detectors, driven by the need for detectors with better time resolution and/or higher count rate capability in medical imaging and other applications. This talk aims to provide a brief overview of the fundamental factors that affect these performance parameters and, based on the insights gained in recent years, to outline some possible directions for further development in the fields of scintillation materials, photosensor technology, and readout electronics. While the application perspective will focus on medical imaging techniques such as time-of-flight PET and photon-counting CT, many of the topics covered will also be applicable in other domains.


Dennis R. Schaart heads the Medical Physics & Technology section at Delft University of Technology (TU Delft). He worked in academia as well as in the medical device industry, always at the intersection of physics, technology, and medicine. He started as an R&D physicist at Nucletron (now Elekta), where he developed new devices for radiotherapy. He obtained his doctoral degree (with highest honors) in 2002. He then joined TU Delft to set up a new research line on in-vivo molecular imaging technology, with special focus on ultrafast detectors for time-of-flight positron emission tomography (TOF-PET). His team was among the first to explore the use of silicon photomultipliers (SiPMs) in TOF-PET and has published many works on the fundamentals of SiPM-based detectors and the theory of ultrafast timing. Dennis’ present research interests include novel methods and technologies for in vivo molecular imaging, anatomical imaging, and image guidance in (proton) radiotherapy. He leads the Technology for Oncology programme of the TU Delft Health Initiative and serves as a member of the R&D Program Board of the Holland Proton Therapy Centre (HollandPTC). He has (co-)authored more than 150 peer-reviewed papers and is a frequently invited speaker.