Category: Uncategorized - page 4

External Components of the Linear Accelerator (LINAC)

The medical linear accelerator (linac) is a crucial piece of technology for the radiation oncology industry and is one of the most used machines in the field. The underlying principle of a linac is straightforward, but producing a consistent, stable beam of radiation and precise, sophisticated design for careful operation is essential.

A linear accelerator works by heating a filament that boils off a cloud of electrons; these electrons are then accelerated by an electric field applied between the filament (cathode) and a thin metal window (anode). The electrons then hit a target (where they produce Bremsstrahlung X-rays) or a scattering foil (to distribute an electron beam evenly.) 

Afterward, the beam can be shaped in the treatment head – a part of the LINAC machine. Below, we discuss the external and internal components of a Linear Accelerator.

External Components of a Linear Accelerator: 

Couch (Patient Positioning System) The couch supports and positions the patient during treatment. Modern LINAC couches allow for precise patient positioning for proper beam exposure, which can move on the x, y, and z-axis. More advanced couches may include the ability to allow a patient to be positioned to roll, pitch, and yaw.

Electronic Portal Imaging Device (EPID) The electronic portal imaging device forms an image using the MV treatment beam. EPIDs are valuable in tools for monitoring patient setup and quality assurance.

Gantry The linac is mounted on a rotating gantry that offers treatment from multiple angles.

kV Imaging System The kilovoltage imaging system consists of a kV X-ray generator and an electronic imaging device. Lower energies of the imaging system improve contrast, particularly when used to produce a cone-beam CT.

Stand Connected to the gantry, the stand contains electrons and other systems required for linac operation.

Read more on the internal components of Linear Accelerators such as the bending magnet, accelerating waveguide, circulator, and more.

RadParts is the world’s largest independent distributor of OEM replacement parts for Linear Accelerators and Radiation Oncology equipment. Our mission is to provide high quality, user friendly, low-cost parts for linear accelerators and radiation equipment. 

https://www.radparts.com  | 877-704-3838

5 Top Digital Marketing Trends for 2020

Not long ago, it used to be that your business could get away with just a simple website and a few social media pages to compete in the online marketing space. However, in today’s online environment, it’s not enough. The digital marketing world demands that you always make efforts to get in front of your target audience by publishing content and digital ad campaigns. It’s also essential to stay ahead of emerging technologies and digital trends as the industry continually evolves and shifts. Below are five digital marketing trends for 2020 (and beyond) that you should be aware of:

  • Facebook is Not the Kingpin of Social Media Anymore

About 5-10 years ago, Facebook was the king of social media and held the second position for the most popular website (just behind Google). It’s now been replaced with YouTube. This doesn’t mean that Facebook is no longer a hugely influential and authoritative site to market on. According to Forbes, 41% of Facebook’s users are over the age of 65, which means the younger audiences have migrated over to Instagram, Snapchat, and now the emerging new social giant, TikTok. If you’re a local business, advertising on Facebook may make sense if you have an older demographic you want to get in front of. However, if you need to reach a younger crowd, consider looking into other social media sites where they spend most of their time. 

  • Instagram is Still One of the Top Choices to Reach Younger Audiences

Instagram has already passed one billion users and is one of the most rapidly growing social media platforms with a primarily younger crowd (typically under 30). However, one change that Instagram recently made was removing the “like” feature on posts to decrease competitive pressure among people who value popularity. Since Facebook owns Instagram, most likely, we might see Facebook follow suite. If you need to get in front of people under 30, Instagram should be considered a critical component in your marketing plan. 

  • Chatbots Will Start to Become Ubiquitous in Customer Service

Artificial Intelligence (AI) will become a dominant factor in about 10-20 years as we’ll see smarter voice assistants embedded within our environments and robots’ services our stores. Many forms of AI are already here, even though they may not seem super-human yet. Several companies will start utilizing chatbots to help with customer service – acting like a virtual “concierge” by communicating with users and assisting them in completing their goals.  

It is said that 80% of businesses claim they want to start using chatbots this year. Some of the benefits are 24-hour service, instant responses to customer queries, and no need for break, vacation, or overtime pay. Tidio research company from January 2020 found that 43% of consumers prefer to message an online chatbot than talk to a person when it comes to customer service. With the benefits of chatbots becoming more cost-effective for business and consumers preferring it over typical customer support, this is one trend that is here to stay.

  • Video Should be Considered a Necessity, Not an Option

The popularity of video cannot be overstated enough. If your business isn’t already utilizing videos, most likely, your competitors are. Static images and text-based content can’t compete with the multifaceted layers videos can accomplish. More people are consuming video content than ever before, and they are using their phones to share the content. Think about these stats from Impact BND:

  • 70% of consumers have shared a brand’s video
  • 52% of consumers claim that watching product videos makes them more confident and guides their online purchasing decisions 
  • 72% of businesses believe video content has improved their conversion rates

Live streaming video is also a powerful way to engage your audience by posting live video updates about your products, services, and brand. Popular video sites like YouTube and now TikTok are great sites to get started if you’re considering video for your marketing. 

  • Content Is Still King

For years, it has been said that content is king, which is more accurate now than ever, with a few modifications. The changes are coming in sub-niches and nuances in content. You must provide exactly the right information that users are looking for when they land on a page on your website. Google released its BERT update in November 2019, which helps the search engine understand the natural language in user search queries. All this means Google is getting smarter, and companies must keep this in mind as they develop content that is relevant to the user and good quality if they want to stay ahead on search engine rankings. 

To read more digital marketing trends for 2020, click here

If you need assistance in improving your website and increasing your online presence, Creative Programs and Systems are here to help! Our team of staff is locally employed, in-house, with a dedication to detail. Call CPS, open Monday – Friday, 9 am to 5 pm (810) 224-5252.

Organic Photovoltaic Cell Produces 17% Efficiency with Superior Processability for Large-Area Coatings

A research team lead by Professor Jian-Hui Hou from the Institute of Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, has optimized the alkyl chains of the BTP-4Cl and synthesized a series of new non-fullerene electron acceptors (NFAs) that can be used for large-area coatings. The team applied the new NFAs in fabricating large-area coated OPV cells and achieved good results. Their study was published in National Science Reviews, “17% efficiency organic photovoltaic cell with superior processability.”

In cooperation with Professor Wei Ma from Xi’an Jiaotong University, they found that a BTP-4Cl-12 had balanced solution processability and aggregation features. The results were that the blade-coating film showed an excellent phase separation morphology, which contributed to the high carrier transport and suppressed charge recombination in the OPV cells. The findings demonstrated that the efficiency of the photoactive materials’ chemical structures substantially impacted large-area coating production.

To learn more about this research, read: https://phys.org/news/2020-02-photovoltaic-cell-efficiency-superior-large-area.html

Apex Measurement Systems is a leading process analytical and quality control supplier in Brighton, MI. We place value on working with engineers and chemists focused on quality, process optimization, standardization, and automation. apexmeasurementsystems.com 

5 Trends That Will Affect the Water Industry in the Next Decade

The water industry is posed to have several new changes that happen within the next decade due to rapid urbanization, climate change, consumer demands, and emerging digital technologies. Complex business challenges will arise, and companies can turn these changes into opportunities that could benefit both businesses and consumers and the environment. Below, are five trends that will have an impact on the water industry within the next decade:

1. Extreme Weather

It is anticipated that we will have more extreme weather in the next decade than ever recorded before. Most of the climate change is attributed to water, and these changes will influence agricultural production, rises in sea levels, and wildfires leading to droughts and floods. 

Hard engineering structures such as dikes, seawalls, and levees can be built to protect coastal communities against severe flooding. The use of intricate water modeling technologies can help determine current vulnerabilities and offer better solutions to address these coastal challenges.

2. Agricultural Changes

The UN has projected that the world’s population will reach more than nine billion by 2050 and making sure that there is enough food for everyone will be essential. It is estimated that global food production needs to be increased by at least 70% to maintain enough food. To keep up with these demands, there needs to be enough arable land for crop production and more efficient irrigation technology to handle the requests. Precision farming systems, coupled with emerging technologies to improve agricultural production, will help in using less water for more crops. 

3. Reusing Wastewater

Wastewater is made up of many valuable elements such as nitrogen, phosphorus, and other resources that can be used for energy and be reused instead of letting them be discarded back into the environment. The current water consumption model is liner in nature, meaning that water is extracted from a source, checked for quality, consumed, treated, and discharged in a receiving body of water. In the next decade, we will see the emergence of a more circular model, one of which focuses on reusing wastewater and utilizing its properties we are currently discarding. To do this, we will need to rethink and redesign the current infrastructure. 

4. Customer-Led Revolution

Digital technologies are used by consumers nearly every moment of the day, empowering them more than ever. People expect more personalized products and services to improve every aspect of their life, which will only increase as time goes on. Businesses must accept that the new paradigm of the empowered customer adapts their mindsets to service this expectation. Technologies for smart water softeners, filtration systems, and other consumer products will give homeowners more control over bills, utilization, and overall maintenance. The water industry will be challenged to examine how to work with businesses, consumers, and technologies to achieve the desired goals for all. 

5. Smart Network and Technologies

As we progress into a more tech-driven world, smart water network solutions will increase in use and improve the reliability of physical water operations by gathering and analyzing data more effectively. The Internet of Things (IoT) is a term coined to describe all devices connected to the internet and speak with each other, sending data, automatic process, and analytics. IoT will help better manage the water industry infrastructure and reduce non-revenue water losses; it will also support essential changes to how utility companies operate and function. This will allow the opportunity to improve productivity and ROI, all while enhancing customer experience and expectations. 

Reynolds Water Conditioning Co. was established in 1931 and is Michigan’s oldest water conditioning treatment company. Reynolds Water is delighted to provide the highest quality products at a cost-effective price. www.reynoldswater.com

Huge Breakthrough Made in the Development of Creating the Worlds Most Powerful Particle Accelerator

Researchers affiliated with UNIST (Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology) have demonstrated, for the first time, the ionizing cooling of muons. For those who work in the field, this is considered a massive step toward creating the world’s most powerful particle accelerator. The new muon accelerator is expected to provide a better understanding of the fundamental properties of matter.

The Muon Ionization Cooling Experiment (MICE) collaboration has been behind the breakthrough, including many UK scientists. One of the pioneers is Professor Moses Chung, who leads his team at the School of Natural Sciences at UNIST. His organization’s work has been featured in the online version of Nature on February 5, 2020.

“We have succeeded in realizing muon ionization cooling, one of our greatest challenges associated with developing muon accelerators,” says Professor Chung. “Achievement of this is considered especially important, as it could change the paradigm of developing the Lepton Collider that could replace the Neutrino Factory of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC).”

These experiments have demonstrated that the phase-space volume occupied by the muon beam can be controlled with ionization cooling, as predicted by the field’s theories.

Read more about this leading breakthrough in particle accelerators, here.

New Mexico Utility has Ribbon Cutting Ceremony for Solar Array to Power Facebook

On Tuesday, June 7th, the largest electric provider in New Mexico had unveiled its solar array to power Facebook’s Los Lunas Center with renewable energy. 

The 50-megawatt facility had its virtual ribbon-cutting event at Encino Solar Fields, located in Sandoval County west of Rio Rancho. New Mexico Renewable Development LLC and Public Service Co. of New Mexico entered an agreement in 2019 to build the array to power the data center near Los Lunas. 

The Encino solar array power purchase agreements equal to 287 megawatts of solar and more than 350 megawatts of wind and includes around 180,00 solar modules. 

Facebook has devoted itself to supporting the utility operations with 100% renewable energy beginning this year, and additional renewable resources are anticipated to emerge for the following years. 

J&P Electrical is a full-service electrical equipment company. At J&P, we supply contractors, end-users, and supply houses with new surplus, quality reconditioned, and obsolete electrical equipment. We also purchase a wide range of electrical equipment, such as bus plugs, ducts, panel switches, substations, and transformers. 

View the original article here: https://www.power-grid.com/2020/07/10/new-mexico-utility-unveils-solar-array-to-power-facebook/

How Covid-19 is Impacting Radiation Oncology in the U.S.

As we continue to move forward in 2020 with Covid-19 seemingly expanding wider, oncologic care is finding itself in an uncommon and challenging dilemma between the goal to protect patients who are susceptible to Covid-19 while also trying to provide the important treatment they need in appropriate time frames so not to jeopardize treatment outcomes.

Unfortunately, those patients who have cancer are particularly susceptible because of their age, health, and immunosuppression from ongoing cancer therapy. With about 50% of cancer patients receiving radiation therapy, radiation departments around the county have needed to adapt in a situation that is uncharted, requiring ultra-sterile environments, and sometimes uncomfortable processes that would not have been necessary before the Covid-19 era.

Radiotherapy institutions are contemplating major questions that can impact not only the quality of their patient’s treatments, but also their patient’s health and the medical staff who serve them. Comprehensive measures are being taken to mitigate risk from exposure and spread. Patients and medical personnel are oftentimes required to enter separate entrances before they take a sperate screening, with appointments broken out in separate intervals to minimize extensive overlap in the waiting room. For patients who are COVID-19 positive and need radiation treatment, all equipment must be sterilized, and extra precautions are taken than those who are Covid-19 negative. Treatment breaks are another issue for recently diagnosed Covid patients, as the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) guidelines require a 14-day minimum quarantine, increasing treatment package and time sacrificing confidence in local control.

A new mindset for department operations is also developing with the use of telemedicine, which has become paramount in mitigating exposure for patients and health care workers while also lowering the number of employees in facilities. While these precautions are necessary and positive for maintaining the spread of Covid, we need to make sure that patients do not feel socially isolated or neglected by their health care providers in such a great time of uncertainty as this. Patients are already trying to overcome the emotional impact of a cancer diagnosis and, world pandemic or not, we need to make sure these patients get all the care they deserve.

Read More: https://appliedradiationoncology.com/articles/the-impact-of-covid-19-on-radiation-oncology-department-workflow-in-the-united-states

Major Benefits to Choosing Aluminum Fencing

Aesthetics matter when it comes to your home’s curb appeal.  It is important that the entrance to your home accurately showcases your house as well as the surrounding landscape. Aluminum fencing can help make your house stand out from the rest. 

Just think about the last time you were driving around and came across a beautiful home that was surrounded by a dilapidated, dated fence.  It probably turned you off and had you no longer wondering what lay on the inside. If you are house hunting it may lead you to believe that the owner doesn’t take care of what they own, which may mean the home has some hidden defect. 

Appeal from the Curb

When selling your home, curb appeal is more important than most any other feature on your home.  It provides buyers the confident they want to ensure the homes value and worthiness.  Little details, such as the type and condition of fencing play a huge part in creating curb appeal.  The installation of an aluminum fence and driveway gate promote qualities all buyers are looking for, sturdiness, dependability, and elegance. It shows the property has been in good hands. 

Budget Friendly

The ordering and installation of an aluminum driveway gate and perimeter fence has been made simpler because of online fence manufacturers, the ability to order from the comfort of your own home and install with tools you likely have sitting around the house already.  Online customer service also helps make ordering and installation simpler as well as the fact that all aluminum fencing from iFenceUSA comes with detailed installation instructions and diagrams.

The best part is that these well-made, beautiful aluminum fences and gates don’t have to break the bank.  Aluminum fencing products from iFenceUSA are priced reasonably; you get a high-quality aluminum fence that doesn’t require yearly maintenance or to be fixed and repaired regularly.  The only thing that is required to maintain aluminum fencing and keep it in good, working condition is a solid cleaning that removes the dirt and mold which can be done using a basic combination of soap and water.

Customization

Another major benefit to aluminum fencing is that it is highly customizable.   You can choose exactly what you want from a fence and gate when you decide on ordering and installing an aluminum fence and gate.  There are 18 different styles of aluminum fence that can be ordered in 4 different grades and in 9 different colors when ordering from iFenceUSA.  Additional pickets can be installed between the existing pickets and even closer pickets near the base can be installed all to provide more security to keep small children and pets contained within the yard. 

An aluminum fence is appealing to homeowners for a number of reasons.  Not only are there benefits to current homeowners but future homeowners as well.  When you want to add a welcoming feel to your property nothing holds it appeal as well as the addition of an aluminum estate gate with a corresponding aluminum fence around the perimeter. 

iFenceUSA is an online distributor of wholesale aluminum fences and gates for residential, resortcommercial, and industrial applications.  As an industry leader in maintenance-free aluminum fencing products we have all your aluminum fence and gate needs covered.  More information can be found online at https://www.ifenceusa.com/.