OHSU joins the NIH in obtaining a 'two-of-a-kind' MRI magnet

PORTLAND, Ore. As OHSU's new Advanced Imaging Research Center (AIRC) continues its expansion, the major component of the final, and most unique instrument for the world-class facility has arrived. On Saturday, April 22, the AIRC took delivery of a 12Tesla (T) magnet, the centerpiece of a rare and cutting-edge MRI system.

"This state-of-the-art 12T system will provide some of the clearest, and likely some of the most useful, images in the history of MRI science," explained Charles Springer, Ph.D., AIRC director and professor of physiology and pharmacology in the OHSU School of Medicine. Springer also serves as a professor of biomedical engineering at OHSU and is a member of the OHSU Cancer Institute. His arrival, along with the establishment of the AIRC, took place through the Oregon Opportunity, a public-private partnership to increase the health and economic benefits of OHSU research for all Oregonians.

The 12T instrument with a magnetic field 120,000 times stronger than that of the Earth was purchased with assistance from a $1.75 million grant provided by the W. M. Keck Foundation. This is the third MRI magnet delivery for OHSU this year. In early January, a 3T magnet was lifted by crane into OHSU's new Biomedical Research Building, the primary home of the AIRC. In late January, OHSU received delivery of a 60 ton, 7T magnet. The extreme size and weight of this piece of equipment, paired with its fragility, resulted in a precise initial positioning that lasted three days. By comparison, the 12T magnet weighs approximately 12 tons (24,000 lbs). However, the magnetic field that will be generated is one of the strongest in the world for a magnet of this relatively large physical size. The inner diameter of its horizontal cylindrical bore is 31 centimeters. In fact, the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md. -- the base of operations for federally funded health research -- is currently the only other site in the world for a 12T MRI syste

Contact: Jim Newman
Oregon Health & Science University

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