Hadrontherapy & Space Radioprotection: two physics fields in 1 experiment

Aperitivi scientifici

  • Data: 07 febbraio 2020 dalle 11:30 alle 12:30

  • Luogo: Aula Teorici, piano 2, via Irnerio 46, Bologna


  • Roberto Spighi: INFN Bologna


Recently, Charged Particle Therapy has gained attention as a promising method for treatment of deep-seated tumours and many facilities using proton or carbon (12C) beam are operative in the world. Given that most of the charged-particle’s energy is released in a localized region, characterized by the Bragg peak, the dose delivered to the surrounding healthy tissues is minimized. Nevertheless, secondary particles produced by nuclear interactions between the beam and patient tissues can pose an additional hazard that has to be carefully taken into account in clinical treatment plans. The first main goal of the FOOT (FragmentatiOn Of Target) experiment is to provide cross section measurements of the all produced nuclear fragments necessary to evaluate the deposited dose for a precise estimation of the risk associated to the treatment.

Current space programs focus on exploration of the Solar system in particular planning the first human mission on Mars. The main problem is to evaluate the exposure to galactic cosmic rays in order to design a suitable shielding to protect the astronauts. The FOOT experiment will measure differential fragmentation cross sections of high-energy light ions in different shielding materials.

The FOOT experiment is designed as a portable detector that can be transported to various facilities around the world for collecting experimental data with different beam conditions. The detector is designed to possess good particle identification capabilities for heavy fragments by measuring their trajectory, momentum, energy and time of flight. For the measurement of light fragments the detector is substituted with a large angle emulsion spectrometer.

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