I'm reading about different types of CT scans and I'm frequency seeing the words "Dual x-ray CT" and "Spectral x-ray CT" being used to describe different things but I can't find a single explanation about the difference between these two things.

Can someone give an explicit explanation about the difference between a dual x-ray CT and a spectral x-ray CT?


Dual X-ray CT is just x-ray at two different energies. You get some physiological information from the different amount of absorption at each wavelength/energy eg. measuring bone mineralisation.

Spectral x-ray CT just extends this to a range of energies. In clinical use they don't really have a true spectral imaging , typically just 4 or 8 energy bands. In theory this should give you more information - but if the energies are all very similar and the noise increases because you are splitting the received power into more detectors it might be more of a marketing benefit

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  • $\begingroup$ So by "extends this to a range of energies", do you mean it's more than two x-ray energies or it's two ranges of energies? $\endgroup$ – Oliver G May 28 '18 at 19:17
  • $\begingroup$ It is a single range of energies - with discrete detectors at each energy $\endgroup$ – Martin Beckett May 28 '18 at 20:50

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