Year

2016

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Department

School of Mechanical, Materials and Mechatronic Engineering

Abstract

Physicians and surgeons rely critically on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans to diagnose and treat critical injuries and medical conditions. In an MRI system, high, stable (<0.1 ppm h-1), and uniform (≤10 ppm in 50 cm diameter of spherical volume) magnetic fields are required for obtaining high-resolution images of the human body. The unique possibilities for the operation of superconducting magnets (i.e., persistent-mode) make them ideal for MRI application. Thus, in the majority of commercially available MRI systems, superconducting persistent magnets based on niobium titanium (NbTi) have been used. These magnets, which are cooled in an expensive liquid helium (LHe) bath at 4.2 K, cannot currently be avoided. Thus, the high operation costs of MRI systems obstruct their extensive use in developing and underdeveloped countries.

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