Multiphysics Coil Design: Applications in Novel Ma.. (MCODE)
Multiphysics Coil Design: Applications in Novel Magnetic Resonance Imaging Systems
Start date: Jan 1, 2014,
End date: Dec 31, 2015
"Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) systems are essential tools for the diagnosis of a wide range of medical conditions. Recent developments in MRI technology have seen a move towards novel systems dedicated to particular medical niches, such as ultra-high field systems, combined MRI-positron emission tomography (PET) scanners and systems for musculoskeletal or brain imaging. These novel systems require radical redesign of the MRI hardware, including one essential sub-system known as the gradient coils. The gradient coils produce images from signals coming from the subject through frequency encoding of the MR signal.Current design methods for gradient coils optimise electromagnetic properties and then empirical testing is needed to ensure that the designs are practical and safe. This is fine for standard MRI systems but the complexity of novel MRI systems means that this is likely to result in suboptimal gradient coils. In this project, we will incorporate a number of properties other than electromagnetics into the design of gradient coils, including temperature, vibration and practical manufacturing constraints. This will ensure optimal performance of gradient coils in novel MRI systems. Preliminary experiments have seen more than 100% improvement in performance in cases where the size of the wire in the coil limits performance. Improved performance of the gradient sub-system will allow increased image resolution, shorter scan times and importantly, will make more novel systems feasible.The project requires development of appropriate models of the physics, software development, empirical validation and the production of gradient coils for a 9.4 T MR-PET system. The outcomes will be a greater understanding of the thermodynamic and vibration processes in gradient coils, new knowledge about the possibility for reduced temperature, vibration and acoustic noise and the production of gradient coils with improved performance to enable new methods in metabolic imaging."
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