Instrumentation for Time-of-Flight Positron Emission Tomography

Muhammad Nasir Ullah, Eva Pratiwi, Jimin Cheon, Hojong Choi, Jung Yeol Yeom

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


Positron emission tomography (PET) is a molecular imaging modality that provides information at the molecular level. This system is composed of radiation detectors to detect incoming coincident annihilation gamma photons emitted from the radiopharmaceutical injected into a patient’s body and uses these data to reconstruct images. A major trend in PET instrumentation is the development of time-of-flight positron emission tomography (ToF-PET). In ToF-PET, the time information (the instant the radiation is detected) is incorporated for image reconstruction. Therefore, precise and accurate timing recording is crucial in ToF-PET. ToF-PET leads to better localization of the annihilation event and thus results in overall improvement in the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of the reconstructed image. Several factors affect the timing performance of ToF-PET. In this article, the background, early research and recent advances in ToF-PET instrumentation are presented. Emphasis is placed on the various types of scintillators, photodetectors and electronic circuitry for use in ToF-PET, and their impact on timing resolution is discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)112-122
Number of pages11
JournalNuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Jun 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work is supported in part by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF-2014R1A1A1005242), MSIP (Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning), Korea, under the C-ITRC (Convergence Information Technology Research Center) (IITP-2015-H8601-15-1011) supervised by the IITP (Institute for Information & Communications Technology Promotion) and Quality of Working Life (QWL) (N0000842) Program funded by the Ministry of Trade, Industry & Energy of Korea.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016, Korean Society of Nuclear Medicine.


  • Instrumentation
  • Positron emission tomography
  • Time of flight
  • Timing resolution

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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