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Nucl Instrum Methods Phys Res B. 2011 Sep 15;269(18):1992-1996.

The Columbia University proton-induced soft x-ray microbeam.

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  • 1Center for Radiological Research, Columbia University, New York, NY 10032 USA.


A soft x-ray microbeam using proton-induced x-ray emission (PIXE) of characteristic titanium (K(α) 4.5 keV) as the x-ray source has been developed at the Radiological Research Accelerator Facility (RARAF) at Columbia University. The proton beam is focused to a 120 μm × 50 μm spot on the titanium target using an electrostatic quadrupole quadruplet previously used for the charged particle microbeam studies at RARAF. The proton induced x-rays from this spot project a 50 μm round x-ray generation spot into the vertical direction. The x-rays are focused to a spot size of 5 μm in diameter using a Fresnel zone plate. The x-rays have an attenuation length of (1/e length of ~145 μm) allowing more consistent dose delivery across the depth of a single cell layer and penetration into tissue samples than previous ultra soft x-ray systems. The irradiation end station is based on our previous design to allow quick comparison to charged particle experiments and for mixed irradiation experiments.

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