Update to Simulation Software for the Magnetic Resonance Community

Remcom announces an update to XFdtd 3D Electromagnetic Simulation Software, Bio-Pro version, enhanced with special features for the Magnetic Resonance (MR) community. XFdtd Bio-Pro is a specialty version of XFdtd, developed for calculation of the biological effects of electromagnetic fields. Highlights of the release include a new birdcage design tool and MR imaging output types. In addition, all versions of XFdtd are updated to include several improvements in usability and performance.

XFdtd Bio-Pro provides users with a bundled collection of important biomedical EM calculation capabilities such as Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) analysis, VariPose mesh repositioning, and Hearing Aid Compatibility (HAC). The new release also adds the following features to the product:

Birdcage Tool: This tool provides the ability to quickly build an MR birdcage coil and prepare it for simulation. A series of tabs guides users through the process of entering specifications and geometric details such as resonant frequency, waveform, capacitors, and number of sources to excite the structure. Upon completion, the tool creates the specified geometry and also creates and attaches all necessary circuit components, creates and/or assigns the waveform, and sets source phases and time delays. Designs include High Pass, Band Pass, Low Pass, and Source-Driven Homogeneous.

MR-related Output Types of MR Transmit Efficiency and Approximate MR Image: These new output types provide additional data when analyzing medical imaging simulations. MR Transmit Efficiency is proportional to the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) for an MR birdcage, a single loop, or a specific set of amplitudes and phases for an MR phased array. The Approximate MR Image is a representation of the actual image generated by the coil, based on the rotating B-field output (B1+) and the water ratio data of the biological tissues in the simulation.

James Stack, Remcom’s training, applications and consulting manager, said, “Remcom has a long history of participation in the MR community and developing tools for SAR modeling, MRI safety analysis, and other specialized applications. Because FDTD has been identified as the favored method for bio-EM calculations, we’ve invested a great deal of time researching this market, learning about its most pressing problems, and adding features to XFdtd that our customers request. The new release reflects our recent focus on improving the efficiency of the birdcage definition process, helping users to prepare the structure correctly by presenting all the critical parameters in one place. The addition of the MR output types and tissue parameters are meant to give users even more options for achieving highly realistic results earlier in the process.”

In addition to the bio-EM features, all versions of XFdtd now include a new tool called the XFdtd Assistant. The Assistant is a step-by-step guide for new users that significantly reduces the learning curve and enables them to progress from a blank project to simulated results quickly and easily. Each tab on the Assistant leads the user through the project creation process with descriptive text that explains each step and links to menus appropriate for that task. As each step is completed, the Assistant adds a check mark on the tab. Experienced users may simply turn the Assistant off, if desired.

Other usability and performance improvements include reduction of memory requirements for steady-state computations when using XStream and other streamlined processes. Information on all of the new enhancements can be found here.

Both the Pro and Bio-Pro versions of XFdtd include XStream GPU Acceleration, 32- or 64-bit analysis module, geometric modeler and postprocessor, shared memory multiprocessor (MPM), XACT Accurate Cell Technology, and a comprehensive variety of 3D CAD import modules. The Bio-Pro version also includes SAR capability, VariPose mesh repositioning, and Birdcage Tool. XFdtd users without an active Remcom Professional Support contract can upgrade to the latest version of Release 7 by contacting sales@remcom.com