Motion Management System

The project aims at the design of a high quality, efficient and cost-effective radiotherapy system for classification, positioning assistance and motion detection of patients. For this purpose, Time-of-flight (ToF) will be utilized, which is an emerging imaging technology for real-time acquisition of metric 3-D surface data. A variety of medical applications will benefit from time-of-flight imaging in the future. The focus of this research project is on the application of ToF sensors to improve the accuracy, safety and workflow of fractionated radiotherapy (RT). As the name implies, the irradiation of the tumor is performed in multiple sessions according to a treatment plan that is generated from an initial computed tomography (CT) scan. In order to ensure an accurate adjustment of the external beam, the oncological patient must be aligned to the reference position of the planning CT before each treatment session. In this project, a surface-based method for patient positioning that relies on ToF data registration is developed. In comparison to existing alignment strategies, the approach is accurate, marker-less, non-invasive, contactless and does avoid additional radiation exposure. Real-time motion management is another promising application of ToF imaging for RT. Thus, a motion management system for acquisition and classification of a multi-dimensional volumetric respiratory signal is developed. The system monitors specific anatomical regions of the upper part of the body and determines the instantaneous phase within the respiration cycle.

Most of the methods to be developed are computationally intensive and time-critical. Thus, the investigation of parallelization techniques and synthesis methods for dedicated hardware (FPGA technology) is one integral part of our research.