A history of positron imaging

Gordon L. Brownell, Physics Research Laboratory, Massachusetts General Hospital Division of Radiological Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, October 15, 1999

The development of positron imaging covered many decades and included contributions by many individuals. Indeed, the unique challenges involved in the detection of annihilation radiation and the subsequent processing of such data into an image format suitable for detection of disease or study of physiological processes has attracted the attention of many outstanding physicists, chemists, biologists and physicians. A thorough review of all of these developments would be beyond the scope of this brief history. However, it is useful to describe some of the early developments in this field dating back to the early 1950's. Although it is true in many fields, it is still disconcerting to find that important developments are placed in a time period that is years or even decades after the initial work.

Presentation given in celebration of the 50th year of services by the author to the Massachusetts General Hospital on October 15th, 1999.