Personalized 3D-printed anthropomorphic whole-body phantom irradiated by protons, photons, and neutrons

Hunter Tillery, Meagan Moore, Kyle J. Gallagher, Phillip J. Taddei, Erick Leuro, David Argento, Gregory Moffitt, Marissa Kranz, Margaret Carey, Steven B. Heymsfield, Wayne D. Newhauser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The objective of this study was to confirm the feasibility of three-dimensionally-printed (3D-printed), personalized whole-body anthropomorphic phantoms for radiation dose measurements in a variety of charged and uncharged particle radiation fields. We 3D-printed a personalized whole-body phantom of an adult female with a height of 154.8 cm, mass of 90.7 kg, and body mass index of 37.8 kg/m2. The phantom comprised of a hollow plastic shell filled with water and included a watertight access conduit for positioning dosimeters. It is compatible with a wide variety of radiation dosimeters, including ionization chambers that are suitable for uncharged and charged particles. Its mass was 6.8 kg empty and 98 kg when filled with water. Watertightness and mechanical robustness were confirmed after multiple experiments and transportations between institutions. The phantom was irradiated to the cranium with therapeutic beams of 170-MeV protons, 6-MV photons, and fast neutrons. Radiation absorbed dose was measured from the cranium to the pelvis along the longitudinal central axis of the phantom. The dose measurements were made using established dosimetry protocols and well-characterized instruments. For the therapeutic environments considered in this study, stray radiation from intracranial treatment beams was the lowest for proton therapy, intermediate for photon therapy, and highest for neutron therapy. An illustrative example set of measurements at the location of the thyroid for a square field of 5.3 cm per side resulted in 0.09, 0.59, and 1.93 cGy/Gy from proton, photon, and neutron beams, respectively. In this study, we found that 3D-printed personalized phantoms are feasible, inherently reproducible, and well-suited for therapeutic radiation measurements. The measurement methodologies we developed enabled the direct comparison of radiation exposures from neutron, proton, and photon beam irradiations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number027004
JournalBiomedical Physics and Engineering Express
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • anthropomorphic phantoms
  • neutron therapy
  • photon therapy
  • proton therapy
  • stray radiation dose
  • three-dimensional printing
  • whole-body

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)


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