We use cookies to understand how you use our site and to improve your experience. This includes personalizing content and advertising. To learn more, click here. By continuing to use our site, you accept our use of cookies. Cookie Policy.

Features Partner Sites Information LinkXpress
Sign In
Advertise with Us

Philips Healthcare

Operates in Diagnostic Imaging Systems, Patient Care and Clinical Informatics, Customer Services, and Home Healthcare... read more Featured Products: More products

Download Mobile App




Events

ATTENTION: Due to the COVID-19 PANDEMIC, many events are being rescheduled for a later date, converted into virtual venues, or altogether cancelled. Please check with the event organizer or website prior to planning for any forthcoming event.
30 Jan 2023 - 02 Feb 2023

Use of High-Temperature Superconductors to Make MR Imaging More Affordable, Accessible and Sustainable

By MedImaging International staff writers
Posted on 07 Dec 2022
Print article
Image: BlueSeal magnet for helium-free MR operations (Photo courtesy of Philips)
Image: BlueSeal magnet for helium-free MR operations (Photo courtesy of Philips)

A new research partnership focuses on the use of high-temperature superconductors to make MR imaging more affordable, accessible and sustainable in the future. Operating at higher temperatures and eliminating the use of liquid helium during both production and operation could reduce the size, weight and cost of MRI scanners, increasing accessibility across all patient communities and bringing advanced diagnostic imaging closer to a first line diagnostic tool.

Royal Philips (Amsterdam‎, Noord-Holland) has entered into a research partnership with magnet solutions provider MagCorp (Tallahassee, FL, USA) to explore superconducting magnets for MR scanners that do not require cooling to ultra-low temperatures (-452 °F or -269 °C) using liquid helium. Developing more sustainable alternatives to helium-cooled MRI magnets at a lower cost has the potential to offer significant benefits by making advanced MR imaging available to more patients in more diverse settings as well as potentially reducing radiology department capital and operating costs.

Operating at higher temperatures closer to ambient room temperature and eliminating liquid helium from both the production and operation of MRI scanners provides two major advantages. First, it decreases energy consumption required to sustain operation and reduces dependence on a finite and increasingly scarce natural resource, produced largely as a by-product of fossil-fuel (natural gas) extraction. Conventional MRI scanners often vent helium, which once released into the atmosphere escapes into outer space never to be seen again. Second, and just as important, it has the potential to reduce the size, weight and costs of MRI scanners. As a result, MRI’s superior diagnostic and functional imaging capabilities – notably its excellent soft-tissue imaging and absence of ionizing X-ray radiation – could be enjoyed by a larger number of patients, expanding access into underserved communities. The partnership between Philips and MagCorp aims to help realize these two major advantages.

With the introduction of its BlueSeal magnet technology in 2018, Philips already has a commercially available non-venting MRI scanner in widespread use that once charged with a small amount of helium (7 liters instead of a conventional scanner’s 1,500 liters) are sealed and operate without requiring additional helium for their entire operational life. Clinical MRI scanners that completely eliminate the need for helium are a clear direction for innovation in the long term. Using high-temperature superconductors supports a complete shift towards helium independence. The research partnership will focus on characterizing and demonstrating the feasibility of appropriate superconducting materials capable of operating at higher temperatures than today’s niobium-based superconductors. In common with helium, niobium is also a scarce element, whereas some of the new materials being investigated by the research team are based on more abundant elements. In addition to basic materials research, the team will also investigate the steps needed to commercialize the materials, and the technologies needed to enable their use in future MRI scanners.

“Florida State University’s MagLab, part of the U.S. National High Magnetic Field Laboratory, is home to many of the world’s leading researchers on novel superconducting materials that don’t require liquid helium temperatures to operate. Philips has decades of MR scanner design and development experience, including most recently the launch of the BlueSeal magnet technology,” said Josh Hilderbrand, Director, Head of MRI Magnet Research and Development at Philips. “Combining these resources with MagCorp’s research facilitation services will help leverage the latest technology to accelerate access and availability of MRI to more patients and healthcare providers.”

“MagCorp is proud of this partnership, which brings together Philips' game-changing BlueSeal magnet technology and the FSU MagLab’s unrivaled knowledge base about superconductors that can operate in a helium-free environment," said Jeff Whalen, Director of MagCorp. "Combining Philips' forward-thinking approach with FSU MagLab's scientists, who have a wealth of relevant expertise in the application of new superconductors, means Philips will be in the best position to develop innovations around this technology."

Related Links:
Royal Philips
MagCorp

New
Gold Supplier
Premium Ultrasound Scanner
ARIETTA 850
All-Digital PET/CT System
Omni Legend
New
Mobile X-Ray Protective Shield
WD306
Fixed X-Ray System
PerfoX 3000 Eco

Print article
CIRS -  MIRION

Channels

Radiography

view channel
Researchers used AI to triage patients with chest pain (Photo courtesy of Pexels)

First Deep Learning AI Model Triages Patients with Chest Pain Using X-Rays

Acute chest pain syndrome can involve tightness, burning or other discomfort in the chest or a severe pain that spreads to the back, neck, shoulders, arms, or jaw, accompanied by shortness of breath.... Read more

Ultrasound

view channel
Image: Dr. Derek Cool demonstrating the new robotic 3D ultrasound system (Photo courtesy of Lawson Health)

Robotic 3D Ultrasound System Improves Accuracy of Liver Cancer Treatment

Liver cancer is the fourth-leading cause of cancer death in the world. Surgery is one treatment option for liver cancer, although thermal ablation which uses heat to destroy the cancerous tumor has less... Read more

Nuclear Medicine

view channel
Image: Tracking radiation treatment in real time promises safer, more effective cancer therapy (Photo courtesy of Pexels)

Real-Time 3D Imaging Provides First-of-Its-Kind View of X-Rays Hitting Inside Body During Radiation Therapy

Radiation is used in treatment for hundreds of thousands of cancer patients each year, bombarding an area of the body with high energy waves and particles, usually X-rays. The radiation can kill cancer... Read more

General/Advanced Imaging

view channel
Image: The HIAS-29000 brain PET scanner with motion correction (Photo courtesy of Hamamatsu Photonics)

New Brain PET Scanner Corrects Blurring in Images Caused by Body Motion

Ordinary brain PET (positron emission tomography) scanners are unable to accurately measure the distribution of radiopharmaceuticals in the brain if the patients move their head during the examination process.... Read more

Imaging IT

view channel
Image: The new Medical Imaging Suite makes healthcare imaging data more accessible, interoperable and useful (Photo courtesy of Google Cloud)

New Google Cloud Medical Imaging Suite Makes Imaging Healthcare Data More Accessible

Medical imaging is a critical tool used to diagnose patients, and there are billions of medical images scanned globally each year. Imaging data accounts for about 90% of all healthcare data1 and, until... Read more
Copyright © 2000-2023 Globetech Media. All rights reserved.