Detective quantum efficiency (DQE) describes how effectively an x-ray imaging system produces high-quality images with low patient exposures.
Digital x-ray systems such as digital radiography, computed radiography, mammography and dental systems require continual maintenance to ensure maximum efficiency and safety. When DQE is maximized, a digital x-ray system will perform to manufacturer specifications and patients will receive the lowest possible dose while not compromising image quality. Previously, assessing the performance of digital radiographic detectors has been an arduous process requiring an expert in DQE physics.
DQE Instruments is a start-up company formed with WORLDiscoveries as a spin-off out of Robarts Research Institute at Western University in London, Ontario. It developed a novel device, called DQEPro, for quickly evaluating the performance of new x-ray imaging systems and their ability to produce high-quality images with very low levels of radiation.
Need or Opportunity:
DQE Instruments attracted significant interest in the first production prototype of its product called DQEPro. It had secured an overseas contract with a rapidly approaching delivery deadline, but it needed to solve some lingering mechanical challenges to meet its delivery commitment. Recognizing that every sale is critical for a young company, DQE came to CIMTEC for help assessing a problematic vibration in the motor system. The team needed to devise a solution as quickly as possible.
Working closely with DQE and building upon shared expertise in imaging and mechanical systems, CIMTEC’s mechanical engineers were able to present several potential solutions within a short timeline. The best solution was developed and manufactured at CIMTEC’s fabrication facility, and a new mechanical assembly was fitted into the DQEPro making it more usable and cost-efficient for clinical use.
The collaboration between CIMTEC engineers and DQE was critical to finding a solution quickly and efficiently. DQE Instruments was able to meet its delivery deadline and satisfy its overseas customers. The company has expanded and now operates on three continents with a growing product line.