Advanced MR Physics Ⅰ

Course description:

This advanced MRI course covers the physical principles of MRI and sequence design issues. Topics that will be covered are:

  • The classical NMR model: nucleus in a magnetic field
  • Rotating reference frame & resonance
  • Bloch equations
  • Signal detection concepts
  • Signal acquisition: FID and echo techniques
  • Multi-dimensional Fourier imaging and k-space
  • Fourier image reconstruction
  • Signal, contrast and noise
  • Basic sequence design

For the lectures (morning sessions) attendance is highly recommended; the tutorial sessions in the afternoon are mandatory: students have to prepare and present assignments.

Learning goals: upon completion of the course the student

  • understands the physical origin of the NMR signal
  • can mathematically describe the methods used for spatial encoding of the NMR signal, for signal detection and for subsequent image reconstruction
  • understands and can mathematically describe the methods for creating various types of signal weighting in MRI
  • can mathematically derive optimal parameter settings for specific MRI applications given certain prerequisites in terms of signal-to-noise-ratio, contrasts, scan duration, etc.
  • knows the basic concepts of pulse sequence design for MRI techniques

Literature/study material: Magnetic resonance imaging: Physical principles and sequence design. E.M. Haacke, R.W. Brown, M.R. Thompson, R. Venkatesan. John Wiley & Sons, New York, 1999 and hand-outs provided by the lecturers. Please note that the book is available as an e-book (download) on the website of Utrecht University Library.

Examination: written open book exam at end of course

Prerequisite knowledge: Basic knowledge of mathematics (differential equations, vector calculus, Fourier analysis, complex functions, electromagnetism (Faraday’s law of induction, static magnetic field calculations, electromagnetic waves) and MRI at BSc level. As well as the study material on MRI provided in the Medical Imaging course Medical Image Formation.

Date: every Thursday from 12 November 2020 until 15 February 2021


Please check the registration procedure for the enrollment deadlines.

Other UU and TU/e partnership students can register for this course via Osiris Student.

Students from outside the UU or TU/E partnership can register for this course by sending an email to Please include your name, student number, Master’s programme and the course code.