BRIC Seminar Series January 2018 - William Hersman, PhD

When Jan 17, 2018
from 12:00 PM to 01:00 PM
Where 2004 Marsico Hall
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William Hersman 1_17_2018William Hersman, PhD

Prof. Dept. Physics and Astronomy
University of New Hampshire

New methods and applications for polarized 3He and xenon-129 for fundamental and medical physics.

Optical pumping of alkali metal vapors with circularly polarized infrared laser light allows the spin-magnetism of nuclei to become aligned in a magnetic field. We have improved several components and processes, lasers, cryogenics, and robotics, to produce large quantities of hyperpolarized xenon for medical imaging. Since xenon is inert it can be inhaled, and since it has nuclear magnetism it can be interrogated in an MRI scanner. This talk will outline innovations that enabled a new measurement of the rate of transfer of gas dissolving into the lung parenchyma, revealing functional aspects of the microscopic tissue composition.