Breakthrough in 0.05 Tesla MRI by engineering team in Hong Kong

24th June, 2024

Operating without the need for radiofrequency or magnetic shielding to address MRI accessibility

image credit- shutterstock

image credit- shutterstock

Led by Professor Ed X. Wu, Lam Woo and Chair Professor of Biomedical Engineering, a research team from Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the University of Hong Kong (HKU) has developed a whole-body Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanner that operates on a standard wall power outlet without radiofrequency or magnetic shielding cages. The machine costs only a fraction of current clinical scanners, is safer, and needs no costly infrastructure to run.

The scanner developed by the HKU team uses a compact 0.05 Tesla permanent magnet and incorporates active sensing and deep learning to address electromagnetic interference (EMI) signals. Human imaging at such a low magnetic field strength has been widely viewed as challenging, if not impossible. In order to eliminate EMI signals, the researchers deployed EMI sensing coils positioned around the scanner and implemented a deep learning method to directly predict EMI-free nuclear magnetic resonance signals from acquired data.

To enhance image quality and reduce scan time, the team also developed a deep learning image formation method. It integrates image reconstruction and three-dimensional multi-scale super-resolution, and leverages the homogeneous human anatomy and image contrasts available in high-field high-resolution MRI data.

Additionally, a new deep learning image formation approach greatly improved the 0.05 Tesla image quality for various anatomical structures, including the brain, spine, abdomen, and knee. It effectively suppressed noise and artefacts and increased image spatial resolution.

© 2023 MM Activ Sci-Tech Communications. All rights reserved | Disclaimer