In this chapter, the Monte Carlo (MC) core is presented, particularly its cross-sectional libraries and random generators. The main idea is to introduce validation and reliability of MC applications and to explore its limitations. As an example, a comparison between two MC toolkits, namely XRMC (version 6.5.0–2) and Geant4 (version 10.02.p02), and a validation between each of them and experimental data applied to mammography (external dosimetry) are presented. The simulated quantities compared are exposure, kerma, half-value layer, and backscattering. Limitations, advantages, and disadvantages of using a general and specific MC toolkit are commented too.
This chapter presents a specific reliability study of some GEANT4-DNA (version 10.02.p01) processes and models for proton transportation considering ultra-thin layers (UTL). The Monte Carlo radiation transport validation is fundamental to guarantee the simulation results accuracy. However, sometimes this is impossible due to the lack of experimental data and, it is then that the reliability evaluation takes an important role. Geant4-DNA runs in an energy range that makes impossible, nowadays, to perform a proper microscopic validation (cross-sections and dynamic diffusion parameters) and allows very limited macroscopic reliability. The chemical damage cross-sections reliability (experiment versus simulation) is a way to verify the consistency of the simulation results which is presented for 2 MeV incident protons beam on PMMA and PVC UTL. A comparison among different Geant4-DNA physics lists for incident protons beams from 2 to 20 MeV, interacting with homogeneous water UTL (2 to 200 nm) was performed. This comparison was evaluated for standard and five other optional physics lists considering radial and depth profiles of deposited energy as well as number of interactions and stopping power of the incident particle.
Part of the book: The Monte Carlo Methods