Novel Software Tools for Rational Design and Assessment of MR coils The goal of this project is to develop a comprehensive software package for the design and evaluation of radiofrequency (RF) coils for applications in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). By means of an intuitive graphical user interface, RF engineers will be able to design highly performing receive and transmit coil arrays, tailoring the shape of the individual elements to the specific imaging task and optimally arranging them around the object of interest, thanks to accurate predictions of coil performance. We will also develop standardized evaluation protocols to quantitatively assess coils against well-defined theoretical performance limits, which are calculated by applying electrodynamics principles and provide an absolute reference, independent on any particular coil geometry. We will integrate various software tools into a modular and flexible software architecture, which will enable other researchers to add extensions and develop stand-alone applications. We will validate the accuracy of the simulation tools and evaluate the software utility through a network of beta testers. In addition to coil design, our comprehensive package will enable to test novel pulse sequences and image reconstruction algorithms, making rigorous development of new ideas accessible to the scientific community, including those with no access to MRI systems. The final software, which will be publicly distributed through a dedicated website with a maintenance plan beyond the duration of the project, will become an invaluable tool that will positively impact the field of medical imaging, with benefits for the entire community.
This project is aimed to produce a comprehensive software package for the design and evaluation of radiofrequency coils for applications in magnetic resonance imaging. We will develop a graphical interface for optimized coil design based on accurate performance predictions, as well as novel software tools for quantitative assessment of actual coils, using well-defined theoretical limits as absolute references. Our toolkit will be published as open-source with a flexible, expandable software architecture and it is expected to positively impact the field of medical imaging.
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