The LIGHT Proton System Module by Module

A Compact, Integrated and Turn-key Solution

The LIGHT system uses innovative linear accelerators and hence does not require a cyclotron nor a synchrotron to accelerate the protons to the high energy levels needed. This means that neither the massive infrastructure, nor the extensive shielding associated with old and current forms of proton accelerators are required.

The LIGHT accelerator is integrated with a fully functional treatment room system that provides its functionality through a set of customable services for the management and the implementation of a patient proton treatment course. The integration of the various sub-systems is such that the clinical user will be working with one user interface related to the nozzle sustem, the patient positioning system, and the imaging system. Each of the software components is based on commercial, off-the-shelf components that are updated to support state-of-the-art and industry-standard communication protocols.

A Largely De-Risked Technology

All the key critical components have already been installed in our testing facility. The future development milestones, highlighted in bold below, were provided in March 2017.

Proton Source

  • The proton source generates a very high rate of up to 200 pulses of proton per second from a source of hydrogen gas

  • Delivered, tested

  • Integrated with the RFQ

Radio-frequency quadrupole ("RFQ")

  • Developed by CERN, the uniquely compact RFQ reaches 5 MeV over 2m by using the radio frequency used by X-ray linacs all over the world

  • Delivered, tested and integrated

  • Protons accelerated to 5 MeV in March 2017: this is the most significant step required to make the LIGHT system a reality

Side Coupled Drift Tube Linac ("SCDTL")
Low speed accelerators

  • Designed by ENEA, an identical system is working up to 35MeV in the ENEA laboratory

  • First unit delivered, tested, integrated and generated proton acceleration as per the plan

  • 3 other units (2 of which are already manufactured) with similar characteristics to be integrated

Coupled Cavity Linac ("CCL") 
High speed accelerators

  • Designed by TERA, the CCLs were successfully tested downstream of a cyclotron to 74 MeV (the "LIBO" experiment)

  • All units for superficial tumours are already manufactured

  • Beam through first CCLs expected by mid 2018; capable of treating superficial tumours by Q3 2018

Dose Delivery System ("Nozzle")

  • Ionisation chamber delivered

  • Scanning magnets produced

  • Ready for installation by mid 2018

Patient Positioning System ("PPS")

  • Composed of the treatment room, robotic arm, CT scanner, optical cameras and other imagery modules

  • The connectivity between the PPS and the accelerator unit has been validated

  • Development of patient positioning system ongoing, in partnership with P-Cure Ltd