High signal-to-noise ratios (SNR) are essential for high-resolution anatomical and functional MRI. Phased arrays are advantageous for this but have the drawback that they often have inflexible and bulky configurations. Particularly in experiments where functional MRI is combined with simultaneous electrophysiology, space constraints can be prohibitive. To this end we developed a highly flexible multiple receive element phased array for use on anesthetized monkeys. The elements are interchangeable and different sizes and combinations of coil elements can be used, for instance, combinations of single and overlapped elements. The preamplifiers including control electronics are detachable and can serve a variety of prefabricated and phase matched arrays of different configurations, allowing the elements to always be placed in close proximity to the area of interest. Optimizing performance of the individual elements ensured high SNR at the cortical surface as well as in deeper laying structures. Performance of a variety of arrangements of gapped linear arrays was evaluated at 4.7 and 7T in high-resolution anatomical and functional MRI. © 2010 Elsevier Inc.
- Phased array
- Physiological noise