MR Physics for Physicists
Skill Level: Intermediate
Jean H. Brittain, Ph.D., James G. Pipe, Ph.D., Michael H.
Buonocore M.D., Ph.D., Klaus Scheffler, Ph.D, Organizers
19 - 20 May
This two-day course focuses on physical theories and principles,
and will provide a sound basis for understanding the technical
presentations at the scientific meeting. A broad range of
scientific topics will be covered, including molecular imaging
physics, pulse sequence design, advanced methods for image
reconstruction and parallel imaging, special pulse sequences and
processing methods for measurement of physiological processes,
and the physics of high field imaging. The section on imaging
physics will include talks on spin phase diagrams, dynamic and
pseudo-equilibrium magnetization states, and multi-dimensional
RF excitation design. The section on image reconstruction will
include talks on the methods of gridding, reconstruction for
multi-coil acquisition, and methods for spatial and temporal
Upon completion of
this course, participants should be able to:
• Starting from first
principles in quantum mechanics, describe and derive the
two-component Schrödinger equation, the equations
for thermal equilibrium, the Bloch equation for magnetization
dynamics, the magnetization relaxation terms T1 and T2, and
the conclusion that the current induced in the MRI coil is a
measure of the expectation value of the magnetic moment of the
• Explain the basic
quantum mechanical and semi-classical theory of relaxation, and
the processes of relaxation of water protons
that occur in tissues and result in image contrast.
• Describe the physics
of alternate mechanisms for spin polarization, as used in
hyperpolarized molecular imaging; also describe
pulse sequence strategies for imaging hyperpolarized elements, and
the contrast mechanisms in molecular imaging.
• Summarize the
physical processes, pulse sequences and other technical
innovations used in fast imaging, such as those
required for magnetization dynamic manipulation for desired image
contrast and high speed spectroscopic imaging.
• Describe advanced
image reconstruction methods based on gridding for non-Cartesian
k-space trajectories, including methods
using coil sensitivity functions for parallel imaging, and methods
using generalized temporal and spatial correlations.
• Describe special MRI
pulse sequences and processing methods used for spatial mapping
and quantification of physiological
processes such as cardiac cycle, musculoskeletal motion, breathing,
brain motion and neural response.
• Explain RF field
equations and reciprocity laws.
This course is designed for:
• PhD. candidates in physics,
chemistry, engineering, applied mathematics and computer
science, as well as Ph.D. postgraduates in
these fields. It is
also suited to established MR physicists, chemists, engineers,
applied mathematicians, computer scientists,
and physicians who
have several years of direct experience performing human MRI
and/or biochemical/biological experiments,
and/or MRI technology
research and development.
The course will be particularly valuable to attendees interested
in obtaining quantitative descriptions of MRI topics. The given
descriptions will reflect the backgrounds and perspectives of
mathematical physicists, physical chemists, and engineers.
Individuals/groups that will most benefit from the course will
have, or will be working towards, a Ph.D. degree in physics,
chemistry, engineering, applied mathematics and/or computer
science, and/or will have several years of direct experience