Imported: 13 Feb '17 | Published: 30 Jan '07
USPTO - Utility Patents
A circuit arrangement for connection of at least two local coils of a magnetic resonance apparatus with at least two evaluation units has at least two sheath wave barriers arranged so that magnetic fields caused by them substantially cancel one another.
1. Field of the Invention
The present invention concerns a circuit for connection of at least two local coils of a magnetic resonance apparatus with at least two evaluation units via two separate lines (conductors).
2. Description of the Prior Art
In magnetic resonance examinations, magnetic resonance signals of an examined patient frequently are acquired by means of local coils positioned close to the patient. The radio-frequency signals are acquired by the local coils and transmitted via a circuit arrangement to the evaluation units of the magnetic resonance apparatus. Arrangements known as local coil arrays are composed of multiple local coils that are simultaneously operated, which leads to interferences due to RF coupling between signal lines in the circuit arrangement. The signal lines generally are shielded to prevent such interferences. An example of a shielded signal line is a coaxial cable. Given the use of such cables, however, the problem exists that sheath waves and sheath wave currents that cause interferences can propagate on the shield conductor. Large sheath wave currents can lead, for example, to an endangerment of the patient or interfere with components. One possibility to prevent such interferences is the use of sheath wave barriers. These can be formed, for example, by windings of the shielded cable formed into a coil and connected in parallel with a capacitive element. The parallel circuit represents a high impedance for sheath waves so that propagation thereof is prevented. It is too complicated, however, to provide every signal line with an individual shield and sheath wave barrier. In particular the cramped space relationships in the imaging apparatus represents a limitation as to the use of sheath wave barriers.
One possibility is to provide a number of cables with a common shield and to decouple them via one sheath wave barrier. Interferences still result, however, due to the cables being wound into coils, for example on further cables or local coils.
An object of the present invention to provide a circuit arrangement that allows signals to be transferred largely free of interference from local coils to evaluation units.
The above object is achieved in accordance with the invention in an circuit arrangement for connecting at least two local coils of a magnetic resonance (MR) apparatus with at least two evaluation units respectively via two separate lines, wherein at least one sheath wave barrier is connected in each of the lines, and wherein the sheath wave barriers are configured so that magnetic fields respectively produced by the sheath wave barriers substantially cancel each other.
At least two sheath wave barriers thus are located between the local coils and the evaluation units, the sheath wave barriers being arranged so that their magnetic fields approximately cancel one another. Such an arrangement prevents crosstalk between the fields generated by the sheath wave barriers and thus prevents unwanted signal coupling to other parts of the circuit arrangement.
In an embodiment, each sheath wave barrier is formed by a shielded cable wound into a coil. In particular a cable used for connection of the local coil with the respective evaluation unit can be wound into a coil for this purpose. This embodiment is particularly cost-effective and can be executed in a space-saving manner.
In a further embodiment, a capacitive element is connected in parallel with each coil. With the coil, this forms a parallel oscillating circuit and thus suppresses the propagation of sheath waves on the shield conductor of the shielded cable.
In a further embodiment, the sheath wave barriers are arranged in pairs. This is particularly advantageous given the use of multiple sheath wave barriers. A component composed of two sheath wave barriers thus can be repeated arbitrarily often in the circuit arrangement, for example after each local coil. Generation of interferences thus is also effectively prevented for longer signal paths.
In a further advantageous embodiment, the two coils forming a pair are respectively wound in different directions. Compensation of the magnetic fields in the environment of both sheath wave barriers is thereby achieved in a simple manner. Mutual influencing is thus suppressed.
In a further embodiment of the invention, the respective outer conductors of the coils forming a pair are connected via a coil and a capacitive element. This connection suppresses crosstalk of signal lines running next to one another
As shown in the FIGURE, a number of local coils 4 are connected to two cable lines 2. Each of the cable lines 2 has a shielding within which multiple inner conductors run. Only the shieldings of the cable lines 2 are shown as shield conductors in the FIGURE. The measurement signals of the local coils 2 are transmitted via the inner conductors to an evaluation unit 6. The cable lines 2 connect the coils 4 with the evaluation unit 6. Only three local coils 4 are shown on each side.
A sheath wave barrier is arranged between two local coils 4 as well as between the lowermost local coil 4 and the evaluation unit 6 in each cable line 2. This is formed by the cable line 2 (thus both the inner conductors and the shielding) being wound into a coil 8 that is connected in parallel with a capacitive element 10. The capacitive element 10 is electrically connected with the shielding. An arrangement of sheath wave barriers in pairs results by the parallel connection of both cable lines 2 to the local coils 4. The sheath wave barriers of a pair have opposite winding directions, as indicated by points 12. The magnetic fields of the coils of the sheath wave barriers thereby cancel one another relative to the environment. Crosstalk between sheath wave barrier pairs is thereby prevented.
The coils 8 of a pair of sheath wave barriers are connected via two inductive elements 14 and two capacitors 16. Direct crosstalk of the signals between the two cable lines 2 is thereby prevented. Moreover the potentials of both cable lines 2 are isolated from one another in the described arrangement. For example, the formation of potential loops is thereby prevented. For symmetry, the inductive element 14 and the capacitor 16 are located in opposite sequence in the two connections between the coils 8.
The described circuit arrangement in particular has the advantage that multiple inner conductors can be contained in a shielding. Even given constricted space relationships as in the examination volume of a magnetic resonance apparatus, a number of cable lines 2 can run closely next to one another without the signals carried thereby mutually influencing one another.
Although modifications and changes may be suggested by those skilled in the art, it is the intention of the inventor to embody within the patent warranted hereon all changes and modifications as reasonably and properly come within the scope of his contribution to the art.