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A Portable Brain MRI Scanner for Underserved Settings and Point-Of-Care Imaging:

Access to and availability of MRI scanners is typically limited by their cost, siting and infrastructure requirements. This precludes MRI diagnostics, the reference standard for neurological assessment, in patients who cannot be transported to specialized scanner suites. This includes patients who are critically ill and unstable, and patients located in low-resource settings. The scanner design presented here aims to extend the reach of MRI by substantially reducing these limitations. Our goal is to shift the cost-benefit calculation for MRI toward more frequent and varied use, including improved accessibility worldwide and point of care operation. Here, we describe a portable brain MRI scanner using a compact, lightweight permanent magnet, with a built-in readout field gradient. Our low-field (80 mT) Halbach cylinder design of rare-earth permanent magnets results in a 122 kg magnet with minimal stray-field, requiring neither cryogenics nor external power. The built-in magnetic field gradient reduces reliance on high-power gradient drivers, which not only lowers overall system power and cooling requirements, but also reduces acoustic noise. Imperfections in the encoding fields are mitigated with a generalized iterative image reconstruction technique, that uses prior characterization of the field patterns. Our system was validated using T1, T2 and proton density weighted in vivo brain images with a spatial resolution of 2.2 x 1.3 x 6.8 mm3.
Comments: under review at Nature Biomedical Engineering

Апдейт: вот еще предложение по портативному сканеру. но у них много искажений:

In vivo three-dimensional brain and extremity MRI at 50 mT using a permanent magnet Halbach array:

Purpose: To design a low-cost, portable permanent magnet-based MRI system capable of obtaining in vivo MR images within a reasonable scan time.
Methods: A discretized Halbach permanent magnet array with a clear bore diameter of 27 cm was designed for operation at 50 mT. Custom built gradient coils, radiofrequency coil, gradient amplifiers and radiofrequency amplifier were integrated and tested on both phantoms and in vivo.
Results: Phantom results showed that the gradient non-linearity in the y- and z-directions was less than 5% over a 15 cm field-of-view and did not need correcting. For the x-direction, it was significantly greater, but could be partially corrected in post-processing. Three dimensional In vivo scans of the brain of a healthy volunteer using a turbo-spin echo sequence were acquired at a spatial resolution of 4x4x4 mm in a time of ~2 mins. T1-weighted and T2-weighted scans showed a good degree of tissue contrast. In addition, in vivo scans of the knee of a healthy volunteer were acquired at a spatial resolution of ~3x2x2 mm within a twelve minutes to show the applicability of the system to extremity imaging.
Conclusion: This work has shown that it is possible to construct a low-field MRI unit with hardware components costing less than 10000 euros, which is able to acquire human images in vivo within a reasonable data acquisition time. The system has a high degree of portability with magnet weight ~75 kg, gradient and RF amplifiers each 15 kg, gradient coils 10 kg and spectrometer 5 kg.

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