Around the world, MRI scanners reaching beyond 10.5 Tesla are being used and developed to produce detailed images of the human brain, and soon the entire human body. There are only three of the $14 million 10.5 Tesla scanners in existence, though all are continuing to push MRI to new limits of magnetic strength, according to an article published Oct. 31 by Nature.com.
The University of Minnesota’s Center for Magnetic Resonance Research in Minneapolis houses one 10.5 T scanner that has four, one meter long tube surrounded by 110 tons of magnet and 600 tons of iron shielding.
Researchers are developing two 11.7 T devices for their first clinical trials, including a whole-body scanner at the NeuroSpin Center at CEA Saclay in France and head scanner at the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland. Germany, China and South Korea are considering building 14 T human scanners.
“The appeal of ultra-high-field scanners is clear. The stronger the magnetic field, the greater the signal-to-noise ratio, which means the body can be imaged either at greater resolution, or at the same resolution, but faster,” according to the article.
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