Monte Carlo simulation of a dynamic MLC based on a multiple source model

Phys Med Biol. 2001 Dec;46(12):3241-57. doi: 10.1088/0031-9155/46/12/312.


Detailed knowledge of the characteristics of the radiation field shaped by a multileaf collimator (MLC) is essential in intensity modulated radiotherapy (IMRT). A previously developed multiple source model (MSM) for a 6 MV beam was extended to a 15 MV beam and supplemented with an accurate model of an 80-leaf dynamic MLC. Using the supplemented MSM and the MC code GEANT, lateral dose distributions were calculated in a water phantom and a portal water phantom. A field which is normally used for the validation of the step and shoot technique and a field from a realistic IMRT treatment plan delivered with dynamic MLC are investigated. To assess possible spectral changes caused by the modulation of beam intensity by an MLC, the energy spectra in five portal planes were calculated for moving slits of different widths. The extension of the MSM to 15 MV was validated by analysing energy fluences, depth doses and dose profiles. In addition, the MC-calculated primary energy spectrum was verified with an energy spectrum which was reconstructed from transmission measurements. MC-calculated dose profiles using the MSM for the step and shoot case and for the dynamic MLC case are in very good agreement with the measured data from film dosimetry. The investigation of a 13 cm wide field shows an increase in mean photon energy of up to 16% for the 0.25 cm slit compared to the open beam for 6 MV and of up to 6% for 15 MV, respectively. In conclusion, the MSM supplemented with the dynamic MLC has proven to be a powerful tool for investigational and benchmarking purposes or even for dose calculations in IMRT.

MeSH terms

  • Computer Simulation
  • Monte Carlo Method
  • Phantoms, Imaging
  • Radiometry
  • Radiotherapy, Conformal / instrumentation*
  • Radiotherapy, Conformal / methods*
  • Time Factors
  • Water / chemistry


  • Water