Conventional scintillators lack precision
Unfortunately, there is a major issue with conventional
scintillators. The created light spreads while it travels through
the scintillator, which results in a light cone rather than a light
spot. Thus, the image sensor would register a signal on several
pixels for each incident x-ray. The amount of absorbed x-rays
and therefore signal strength depends on the material thickness.
Therefore, conventional scintillators involve a trade-off between
sensitivity and resolution.
Silicon channels the light
The structured scintillator technology overcomes the drawbacks of
conventional digital x-ray detectors. While the visible light
created through x-ray absorption spreads on its way through the
crystal in unstructured scintillators, the innovative concept
developed and patented by Scint-X channels the light on its way to
thesensor. Narrow pores are etched into silicon in order to
manufacture a matrix that can be filled with a scintillator
material like Thallium doped Cesium Iodide. When x-rays enter those
channels, they are converted into green light, which is reflected
by the pore sidewalls and thus contained within the pore.
Sensitivity and resolution
Thus, the spreading of created light, that would lead to crosstalk
between neighboring pixels on the sensor, can be avoided. This
means that the structured scintillator can be optimized with
respect to sensitivity without loss of resolution.