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NMR/MRI with hyperpolarized gas and high Tc SQUID

United States Patent

December 12, 2000
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory - Visit the Technology Transfer and Intellectual Property Management Department Website
A method and apparatus for the detection of nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) signals and production of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) from samples combines the use of hyperpolarized inert gases to enhance the NMR signals from target nuclei in a sample and a high critical temperature (Tc) superconducting quantum interference device (SQUID) to detect the NMR signals. The system operates in static magnetic fields of 3 mT or less (down to 0.1 mT), and at temperatures from liquid nitrogen (77K) to room temperature. Sample size is limited only by the size of the magnetic field coils and not by the detector. The detector is a high Tc SQUID magnetometer designed so that the SQUID detector can be very close to the sample, which can be at room temperature.
Schlenga; Klaus (Eggenstein, DE), de Souza; Ricardo E. (Recife, BR), Wong-Foy; Annjoe (Berkeley, CA), Clarke; John (Berkeley, CA), Pines; Alexander (Berkeley, CA)
The Regents of the University of California (Oakland, CA)
09/ 393,406
September 10, 1999
GOVERNMENT RIGHTS The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. DE-AC03-76SF00098 between the United States Department of Energy and the University of California.