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Keywords:

  • RF coils; specific absorption rate;
  • B1-field inhomogeneity;
  • finite-element analysis

Abstract

Birdcage coils are widely used as a radiofrequency (RF) resonator in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) because of their capability to Produce a highly homogeneous B1 field Over a large volume within the coil. When they are employed for high-frequency MRI, the interaction between the electromagnetic field and the object to be imaged deteriorates the B1-field homogeneity and increases the specific absorption rate (SAR) in the object. To investigate this problem, a finite-element method (FEM) is developed to analyze the SAR and the B1 field in a two-dimensional (2D) model of a birdcage coil loaded with a 2D model of a human head. The electric field, magnetic field, and SAR distributions are shown, and a comprehensive study is carried out for both linear and quadrature birdcage coils at 64, 128, 171, and 256 MHz. It is that to generate the same value of the B1 field, the SAR is increased significantly with the frequency, and for the same imaging method the SAR produced by a quadrature coil is significantly lower than that of a linear coil. It is also shown that the B1-field inhomogeneity is increased significantly with the frequency.