The MRI-1 Ventilator is a small animal ventilator designed for use in MRI and other high magnetic field environments. The system comprises a microprocessor-based control unit and a set of remote, pneumatically operated, non-metallic valves. The MRI-1 can operate by itself or can be controlled and/or monitored by a computer.
The MRI-1 operates on the flow-time principle: an inspiratory airflow is established and gated into the animal for a known time, thus producing a known volume. This approach provides extraordinary flexibility — a wide range of volumes, breaths-per-minute, and I/E ratios are possible with no hardware changes, and using just three front-panel controls.
Respiratory airflow is provided by an internal airpump. Alternatively, an external pressurized gas source can be attached (oxygen or anesthetic gasses). The remote high-speed, miniature pneumatic valves do the actual airflow switching. By locating these valves close to the animal (including inside the magnet bore if necessary), dead-space and tubing compliance are minimized.