Novel Process for Improved Light Sharing Between Scintillator Crystals in Positron Emission Tomography (PET) Detector Systems


Positron Emission Tomography (PET) is a nuclear medical imaging method that outputs 3D images to see the functional processes in living organisms. Positron-emitting radionuclides decay with each annihilation once they are introduced into an organism and they emit two photons in diametrically opposing directions. A time of flight PET system detects the photons, and uses the times of flight of the photons to determine if two registered photons belong to the same positron annihilation event. High depth-of-interaction (DOI) resolution is needed in PET scintillators to reduce parallax error and the spatial blur that results from the small ring diameters of the detection system. The DOI readout is traditionally performed with a double-sided readout using two readout arrays per scintillator array, however, this readout method requires double the amount of electronics compared to a regular PET system. Thus, developments that require one scintillator and one readout array have been made. The conventional light guide geometry for these developments revolve around the use of a flat, uniform reflective material, which essentially directs light back into the original scintillation crystal that gamma-ray absorption took place rather than to the other crystals and readout pixels. This is not optimal because most of the light is not being shared with the other pixels and thus this is relatively inefficient. Since conventional systems and methods fail to provide impactful light sharing techniques in PET detector systems, a new method is needed.


This technology revolves around the detection of sub-atomic particles via a device that includes a plurality of scintillators. There is at least one detector on the first end of a scintillator, and a prismatoid on the second end of the same scintillator. The prismatoid is configured to redirect light between the first pair of adjacent scintillators of the plurality of scintillators.  The prismatoid allows for the light to be redirected much more evenly within PET detector systems thus increasing efficiency.


- Much more efficient than conventional approaches as the redirection of light is more equal - Less electronics necessary as two readout arrays per scintillator array aren't needed


Used to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of PET detector systems and the images they output.

Patent Status

Patent application submitted,Provisional patent

Stage Of Development


Licensing Potential

Development partner,Commercial partner,Licensing

Licensing Status

Available for Licensing.

Additional Info Source: liz west,, CC BY 2.0.
Patent Information:
Case ID: R050-9053
For Information, Contact:
Donna Tumminello
Assistant Director
State University of New York at Stony Brook
Amirhossein Goldan
Andrew LaBella
Wei Zhao
Anthony Lubinsky