The aim of this work is the reconciliation of high spatial and temporal resolution for MRI. For this purpose, a novel sampling strategy for 3D encoding is proposed, which provides flexible k‐space segmentation along with uniform sampling density and benign filtering effects related to signal decay.
For time‐critical MRI applications such as functional MRI (fMRI), 3D k‐space is usually sampled by stacking together 2D trajectories such as echo planar imaging (EPI) or spiral readouts, where each shot covers one k‐space plane. For very high temporal and medium to low spatial resolution, tilted hexagonal sampling (T‐Hex) was recently proposed, which allows the acquisition of a larger k‐space volume per excitation than can be covered with a planar readout. Here, T‐Hex is described in a modified version where it instead acquires a smaller k‐space volume per shot for use with medium temporal and high spatial resolution.
Mono‐planar T‐Hex sampling provides flexibility in the choice of speed, signal‐to‐noise ratio (SNR), and contrast for rapid MRI acquisitions. For use with a conventional gradient system, it offers the greatest benefit in a regime of high in‐plane resolution <1 mm. The sampling scheme is combined with spirals for high sampling speed as well as with more conventional EPI trajectories.
Mono‐planar T‐Hex sampling combines fast 3D encoding with SNR efficiency and favorable depiction characteristics regarding noise amplification and filtering effects from decay, thereby providing flexibility in the choice of imaging parameters. It is attractive both for high‐resolution time series such as fMRI and for applications that require rapid anatomical imaging.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
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