Thursday, May 26, 2005

What a wonderful machine

So, today I was warned not to lose anything inside our MRI machines. To get any (magnetic) metal objects out, you basically have to "turn off" the magnet which costs weeks and thousands of dollars - basically, it becomes a permanent part of the machine. Although, I guess it is common for nearby ATM and credit cards to stop working (since those are coded and erased by magnetic fields).

The machine I'll be working with (at least for this summer) is 9.4 Tesla. That's incredibly strong - to give you some kind of idea, a 9.4 Tesla magnet is 150,000 to 300,000 times more powerful than the earth's magnetic field (as felt from it's surface). Not to worry though, the FDA limits the scanners used on humans to 3T, a mere 50,000 to 100,000 times that of earth.

You can see examples of items getting stuck in clinical scanners (those used on humans) here. I don't think you could pull any of these out by hand.


Blogger Owen said...

I think you should put some plasma in there. You know, the fourth phase of matter plasma. That'd be neat. And a nice PhD dissertation!

11:58 PM  

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