How is MAGNUS different from other 3T scanners?

The MAGNUS is a head-only insert for a standard GE 3T scanner from which the whole-body gradient coils are removed.  The narrow bore diameter at the head allows it to achieve very high gradient performance, comparable to a Siemens Connectom Scanner.  This is especially beneficial for diffusion imaging, and will also be advantageous for other MRI protocols.   Further details on this page [link to the proposed ‘advantages of MAGNUS’ page – see above]

Where will it be located?

The MAGNUS will be installed in the BWH MRI Center at 221 Longwood Avenue, Boston.  The center is  already equipped with infrastructure to support basic and patient-based research.

When will it be available at BWH?

We anticipate that it will be installed in summer 2023 and that barring unexpected delays it will be available to users by the end of 2023.

What will be the available hours and costs?

The MAGNUS will be available on similar terms to other research scanners through the BWH imaging core.  However, because the MAGNUS is a research-only device, we anticipate that scheduling will be more flexible than for other scanners that are shared with clinical users.

The hourly fee is not yet finalized but will be set in accordance with MGB policy on fee-for-service cores.  We expect that it will be comparable to other MRI scanners.

What is the availability to non-BWH users?

As with our current scanners, the MAGNUS will be open to external as well as internal users. 

What peripheral equipment will be available?

The MAGNUS will be equipped initially with a standard 32-channel head coil, and later with a high performance 64-channel coil that is still under development.   There will be an i/v contrast pump to support scans with contrast agents. We also plan to install MR-compatible audio and visual stimulus devices to support task-based fMRI studies.  Details are still under discussion, so if you have a specific need or interest please contact us.

What is the regulatory status of the MAGNUS?

The MAGNUS is not yet a commercial instrument.  It will be installed and operated through a research collaboration between BWH and GE Global Research.  It is currently an investigational device for research only, and is not approved for clinical use.  We are working with GE to obtain IRB approval to scan human subjects, prior to its installation at BWH.  Individual PIs will then need to obtain approval for their specific research projects, as with any imaging study.

How many other MAGNUS sites are there?

There is a testbed MAGNUS system at the GE Research Center in Niskayuna, NY.  The first external system was installed by GE at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, MD, and has been operational since 2020.  Other installations are planned at University of Wisconsin-Madison and University of Iowa, supported in both cases by NIH instrumentation grants. Several other institutions in the US and elsewhere are in discussion with GE about acquiring MAGNUS systems.

How can I stay informed?

Please sign up for our MAGNUS email list [need to create a system for this].   As we approach installation, we plan to organize seminars and workshops on topics related to high-performance MRI, and to provide updates to potential users.  Students, postdocs, clinical fellows and other non-faculty researchers are also invited to joint this list. 

How can I cite this as a resource in a grant application?

Please contact us and we will be happy to work with you on language and support letters.

GE has also indicated that they welcome visits from potential users at their research site in Niskayuna, NY.  There may be opportunities to collect pilot data during these visits.

I have specific question not answered here.

Please contact us.