PhD on AI-based SAR prediction and thermometry for MRI safety assessment

Eindhoven University of Technology
September 30, 2023
Offerd Salary:€2,770
Working address:N/A
Contract Type:Other
Working Time:Full time
Working type:N/A
Ref info:N/A
PhD on AI-based SAR prediction and thermometry for MRI safety assessment

An MRI scanner is like a microwave oven: it deposits heat. Safety is enforced by strict power limits, but we do not really know the actual temperature rise within patients. This project aims to develop (AI-assisted) MRI methodologies to measure power deposition and temperature rise in a patient.



Irène Curie Fellowship



Biomedical Engineering



Date off


Reference number


Job description

MRI scanners make use of a radiofrequency (RF) field to excite atomic nuclei. This RF field also deposits energy which may heat up the patient. To safeguard the patient, maximum levels of energy deposition and, therefore, strict power limits are in place. However, the actual temperature rise distribution that results from this constrained power deposition is not known. Simulations indicate that the peak power deposition and temperature rise might be quite large. We do not know if these simulations are accurate. Ideally, we would like to be able to measure the RF-induced distribution of energy deposition and temperature rise. For this purpose, the department of biomedical engineering of the Eindhoven University of Technology, together with the University Medical Center Utrecht, have started a project to develop such methodologies.

Recently, we demonstrated an AI-based method where spatial distributions of the specific absorption rate (SAR) are predicted by a deep-learning network from the MRI-measurable magnetic component of the RF field (the so-called B1+ field, figure 1). This method to measure energy deposition needs to be extended and improved. Next to this, MRI scanners are actually able to measure temperature rise. This technique is called ‘MR Thermometry'. The technique is mostly used for thermal therapies where the local temperature rise easily reaches 5° C. For our purposes, the sensitivity needs to be improved considerably as temperature rise within subjects in regular MRI scans is expected to be below 1° C. Recently obtained results for the upper leg are shown in figure 2. With these methodologies, validation of thermal simulations becomes within reach. Also, we will be able to verify current RF power limits in MRI. The final goal of the project is to measure energy deposition and temperature rise within 30 subjects undergoing MRI examinations.

Next to another PhD student at the UMC Utrecht, you will develop MRI methods to measure power deposition and temperature rise distributions. Methods will be developed and tested using MRI scanners at the UMC Utrecht. All developments are supported by electromagnetic and thermal simulations as well as AI-based processing of measured data. Anticipated challenges include dealing with B0 field disturbances, motion artifacts, thermally induced susceptibility changes and many more. The exact distribution of tasks between both PhD students will be determined based on interests and capabilities. You will be part of the medical image analysis group of the department of biomedical engineering at the Eindhoven University of Technology. There will be a strong cooperation with the computational imaging group of the UMC Utrecht.

Figure 1: SAR prediction from the B 1+ field (=flip angle map) using a CNN​ Figure 2: MR thermometry results in the upper leg in comparison to simulations.

Job requirements
  • A master's degree (or an equivalent university degree) in physics, electrical engineering or biomedical engineering.
  • Research-oriented while also having a problem-solving attitude
  • Good communicative skills. Ability to cooperate with team members from TUE and UMCU.
  • Contribute to (MRI-)education at the department of BME
  • Fluent in spoken and written English (C1 level).
  • Knowledge on an electromagnetic simulation package (preferably Sim4Life) is an advantage.
  • Knowledge on MRI physics is an advantage
  • Conditions of employment

    A meaningful job in a dynamic and ambitious university, in an interdisciplinary setting and within an international network. You will work on a beautiful, green campus within walking distance of the central train station. In addition, we offer you:

  • Full-time employment for four years, with an intermediate evaluation (go/no-go) after nine months. You will spend 10% of your employment on teaching tasks.
  • Salary and benefits (such as a pension scheme, paid pregnancy and maternity leave, partially paid parental leave) in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities, scale P (min. €2,770 max. €3,539).
  • A year-end bonus of 8.3% and annual vacation pay of 8%.
  • High-quality training programs and other support to grow into a self- aware, autonomous scientific researcher. At TU/e we challenge you to take charge of your own learning process.
  • An excellent technical infrastructure, on-campus children's day care and sports facilities.
  • An allowance for commuting, working from home and internet costs.
  • A Staff Immigration Team and a tax compensation scheme (the 30% facility) for international candidates.
  • Information and application

    About us

    Eindhoven University of Technology is an internationally top-ranking university in the Netherlands that combines scientific curiosity with a hands- on attitude. Our spirit of collaboration translates into an open culture and a top-five position in collaborating with advanced industries. Fundamental knowledge enables us to design solutions for the highly complex problems of today and tomorrow.

    Curious to hear more about what it's like as a PhD candidate at TU/e? Please view this video.


    Do you recognize yourself in this profile and would you like to know more? Please contact the hiring manager Alexander Raaijmakers, Assistant Professor,

    Visit our website for more information about the application process or the conditions of employment. You can also contact Sascha Sanchez, HR advisor, or +31 40 247 7310.

    Are you inspired and would like to know more about working at TU/e? Please visit our career page.


    We invite you to submit a complete application by using the apply button. The application should include a:

  • Cover letter in which you describe your motivation and qualifications for the position.
  • Curriculum vitae, including a list of your publications and the contact information of three references.
  • We look forward to receiving your application and will screen it as soon as possible. The vacancy will remain open until the position is filled.

    From this employer

    Recent blogs

    Recent news