PET detectors and instrumentation have developed into sophisticated clinical tools, but further scope exists to develop higher-sensitivity, higher-resolution devices. There are now a number of scintillator crystals employed in commercial scanners, each with their own unique characteristics, including price. The range of scintillators may expand even further, especially if time-of-flight machines are developed. Light-collection technology may move away from photomultiplier tubes to solid-state devices (photodiodes) which will improve coupling and increase the bandwidth for data collection and processing by reducing the multiplexing of the signals.
Scanner design will continue to evolve and provide challenges in terms of photon detection, discrimination, and performance. Developments in basic physics will underpin many of these enhancements.
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