A prototype Multi-X-ray-source array (MXA) for digital breast tomosynthesis

Amy E. Becker, Andrew M. Hernandez, John M. Boone, Paul R. Schwoebel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The design and testing of a prototype Multi-X-ray-source Array (MXA) for digital breast tomosynthesis is reported. The MXA is comprised of an array of tungsten filament cathodes with focus cup grid-controlled modulation and a common rotating anode housed in a single vacuum envelope. Prototypes consisting of arrays of three-source elements and eleven-source-elements were fabricated and evaluated. The prototype sources demonstrated focal spot sizes of 0.3 mm at 45 kV with 50 mA. Measured x-ray spectra were consistent with the molybdenum anode employed, and the tube output (air kerma) was between 0.6 mGy/100 mAs at 20 kV and 17 mGy/100 mAs at 45 kV with a distance of 100 cm. HVL measurements ranged from 0.5 mm Al at 30 kV to 0.8 mm Al at 45 kV, and x-ray pulse widths were varied from 20 ms to 110 ms at operating frequencies ultimately to be limited by source turn-on/off times of ∼1 ms. Initial results of reconstructed tomographic data are presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number235033
JournalPhysics in medicine and biology
Issue number23
StatePublished - Nov 25 2020


  • digital breast tomosynthesis
  • multisource x-ray
  • stationary x-ray source

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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