Source localization of brain activity using helium-free interferometer

Jürgen Dammers, Harald Chocholacs, Eberhard Eich, Frank Boers, Michael Faley, Rafal E. Dunin-Borkowski, N. Jon Shah

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To detect extremely small magnetic fields generated by the human brain, currently all commercial magnetoencephalography (MEG) systems are equipped with low-temperature (low-Tc) superconducting quantum interference device (SQUID) sensors that use liquid helium for cooling. The limited and increasingly expensive supply of helium, which has seen dramatic price increases recently, has become a real problem for such systems and the situation shows no signs of abating. MEG research in the long run is now endangered. In this study, we report a MEG source localization utilizing a single, highly sensitive SQUID cooled with liquid nitrogen only. Our findings confirm that localization of neuromagnetic activity is indeed possible using high-Tc SQUIDs. We believe that our findings secure the future of this exquisitely sensitive technique and have major implications for brain research and the developments of cost-effective multi-channel, high-Tc SQUID-based MEG systems.

Original languageEnglish
Article number213705
Number of pages4
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Issue number21
Publication statusPublished - 26 May 2014
Externally publishedYes

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