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Nick Payne

Southampton 2012I graduated from the University of Southampton in 2012 with a BSc in Physics. Following a year out, I joined the University of Aberdeen in 2013 to undertake a PhD in the FFC-MRI group.

My research focuses on the use of quadrupolar nuclei in fast field-cycling MRI (FFC-MRI). Unlike in traditional MRI where the external field strength is held constant during image acquisition, in FFC-MRI the external field is varied during the pulse sequence allowing NMR characteristics such as T1 to be measured as a function of magnetic field. This can be used as a new form of MRI contrast and has potential application in the detection of a range of disorders. Quadrupolar nuclei in a sample (or patient) affect proton magnetisation when certain resonance conditions are met and this can be used as a further contrast within FFC-MRI.

At present I am researching techniques known as Nuclear Quadrupole Double Resonance (NQDR), developed in solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), and seeing how they can be translated into Aberdeen's FFC-MRI experiments. This work has so far led to the development of a tuneable irradiation system and a Q-switch circuit designed to operate at 2.5 MHz. I am currently investigating the use of sweeping the magnetic field experienced by the sample.

Biomedical Physics
University of Aberdeen
AB25 2ZD