A linear accelerator is a precision medical device that is used to treat cancer patients. Technically, it doesn’t really “kill” cancer cells; rather it does something to them that keeps them from reproducing. I learned this and a whole lot more from Tom Dellinger, Pardee’s medical physicist at the Kayden Radiation Oncology Center, who knows a lot about linear accelerators — particularly the one we’re getting. Dellinger handed me a shiny brochure similar to what you might find in a new car showroom. It featured a model called the Elekta Infinity. Eleckta is a Swedish firm but the Infinity is made in the UK and it costs about $2 million.

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