Beam modeling and beam model commissioning for Monte Carlo dose calculation-based radiation therapy treatment planning: Report of AAPM Task Group 157

Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Title

Medical physics


Dose calculation plays an important role in the accuracy of radiotherapy treatment planning and beam delivery. The Monte Carlo (MC) method is capable of achieving the highest accuracy in radiotherapy dose calculation and has been implemented in many commercial systems for radiotherapy treatment planning. The objective of this task group was to assist clinical physicists with the potentially complex task of acceptance testing and commissioning MC-based treatment planning systems (TPS) for photon and electron beam dose calculations. This report provides an overview on the general approach of clinical implementation and testing of MC-based TPS with a specific focus on models of clinical photon and electron beams. Different types of beam models are described including those that utilize MC simulation of the treatment head and those that rely on analytical methods and measurements. The trade-off between accuracy and efficiency in the various source-modeling approaches is discussed together with guidelines for acceptance testing of MC-based TPS from the clinical standpoint. Specific recommendations are given on methods and practical procedures to commission clinical beam models for MC-based TPS.

PubMed ID



ePub ahead of print