Magnetic Particle Spectrometer that Evaluates Nanoparticles for Biomedical Applications

Technology #15979

Uses Motionless Sample to Characterize Nanoparticles Intended for Use in Magnetic Particle Imaging

This magnetic particle spectrometer surpasses available AC susceptometers and magnetic particle spectrometers because it uses high magnetic field amplitude, large frequency range, and specialized coils and signal analysis to remove background noise in order to accurately characterize a wide variety of magnetic particle properties. Magnetic particle imaging is a new biomedical imaging modality that has potential to provide real-time 3D imaging comparable to PET scanning, but without radioactive tracers. Currently, the global medical imaging industry is estimated at $27 billion and is expected to grow to $35 billion by 2020. Researchers at the University of Florida have created a magnetic nanoparticle spectrometer to produce high-resolution dynamic magnetization measurements from small quantities of magnetic particle suspensions. This magnetic nanoparticle spectrometer provides a wide range for both field amplitude and frequency, and also provides background noise cancellation and feed-through reduction features, an improvement on available technologies. The system also has a relaxometer mode for mimicking the magnetic fields imparted by an MPI scanner. Beyond the uses in magnetic particle imaging, this magnetic nanoparticle spectrometer has potential application for characterizing magnetic particles for magnetically triggered drug delivery, biosensing and thermal cancer therapy.


Magnetic particle spectrometer to enhance the magnetic field amplitude and frequency range for characterizing magnetic nanoparticle suspensions


  • Uses motionless sample and small sample volume, decreasing system complexity and reducing costs and measurement times
  • Provides specialized noise cancellation, increasing data accuracy and coil sensitivity
  • Uses high magnetic field amplitudes over a large frequency range, allowing for non-linear behavior characterization of particle suspension


This magnetic particle spectrometer enhances accuracy in measurements using both hardware (balancing coils and active electronic cancellation) and software (background subtraction). It measures the underlying dynamic phenomena of the nanoparticles in suspensions. These measurements can evaluate the suitability of different particles for magnetic particle imaging applications and provide feedback to improve their synthesis. The complete system design and wide range of operation provides significant advantages over existing magnetic particle characterization technologies. The specialized coil design allows for increased sensitivity and accuracy, while decreasing background noise and the need for motion of the sample, a significant leap forward from available AC susceptometers.