MedAustron

Advanced Centre for Ion Therapy and Research

Introduction

MedAustron is an advanced center for ion beam therapy and research (using protons and carbon ions), and is currently being built in Wiener Neustadt, Austria. Cosylab has been working for the MedAustron Project since 2010 helping in three areas; core control system development, beam diagnostic device integration support, and medical front-end device development.

We delivered to the MedAustron project the following:

 

  • Front End Control System (FECOS); a specialized framework that provides control system core functionalities, specially addressing dynamic behavior of the machine and enforcing a procedure for medical use. It’s a basis for a subsequent integration of all accelerator subsystems (such as ion-source, power converter controller, injector LLRF, etc.). It allows fast cycle-to-cycle machine reconfiguration.
  • Main Timing System (MTS); due to machine’s dynamic behavior (ramping, different flat-top energy settings, extraction), driven on-demand by dose/depth requirements, timing system is responsible for synchronizing all machine actions and has built-in support for faster commissioning – with machine time being a precious value.
  • Power Converter controller (PCC); synchrotron ramping and on-demand extraction require massive amount of tightly-synchronized waveforms and set-points of values for magnet power supply controllers. Having also various types of power supply interfaces, this required very thoughtful architecture and implementation that meet real-time needs.
  • Integration of various accelerators subsystems; ion-source from Pantechnik, injector LLRF from Thomson (required a bridge to its DESY based local control system), multi-channel MACS integrated oscilloscope solution (for commissioning support)… We were responsible to gather integration requirements (directly with systems’ suppliers), architectural proposal, implementation, and final site-acceptance.
  • In the Medical Frontend side we designed and delivered three different hardware products in the “critical” chain of patient dose delivery verification. The entire development cycle had to be compliant with ISO 13485. E.g. part of delivery are energy verification and independent termination systems that are responsible for real-time monitoring of delivered dose and energy, comparing it to the desired values and, if outside boundaries, stopping the delivery.
  • For all of the systems we delivered compete documentation; requirements, architecture, test-plan and test reports, using a framework enforcing complete coverage and traceability – a basis for certification.
  • During the development we had to address many technical aspects and, among other, we developed a:
    - protocol for a generic communication between National Instruments PXI-based equipment and Power Converter controller (PCC) magnet supply
    - together with MRF, a PXI-e based MRF compatible receiver, with full LabVIEW support
    - special hardware component, which allows connection of different types of power supply controllers in a uniform way into upper tiers of MACS
  • Accelerator on-site we supported Beam Diagnostic group with a service of integration multitude of BD devices into MedAustron Control System and support to operators.

For more information on this reference, please direct your request at: info@cosylab.com.

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