The NIC is equipped with a number of peripherals to support functional MRI studies. These include:
Stimulus Presentation Computer
Used to present audio and video stimulus to a subject lying in the scanner. This is a dual-boot Mac Pro (2x2.66 GHz Dual-Core Intel Xeon with 2GB of RAM), which can be booted in either Windows XP or Mac OS X 10.4. We have licenses for E-Prime 1.2, Psychtoolbox 3 and Presentation.
Our setup has a KVM switch, so stimuli can also be presented using a laptop.
LCD Presentation Screen
Visual stimuli are presented on a specially shielded 32” LCD monitor which has been stripped of ferrous material and placed in an aluminum enclosure with a conductive glass front. The screen is located behind the magnet, in line with its bore, and is viewed using a mirror mounted on the head coil (the horizontal viewing angle is 15.5°).
SereneSound Audio System
As an alternative to the Siemens audio system, patients can be provided with high fidelity audio sound using this MR compatible system from Resonance Technology http://www.mrivideo.com/product/fmri/as.htm.
A dual-channel noise-canceling microphone from Optoacoustics http://www.optoacoustics.com/article.php?id=10 can be used to record subjects’ vocal responses while in the scanner.
We have a high speed (120 Hz) Long-Range Eye Tracking system from ASL http://www.a-s-l.com/site/Products/EYETRAC6Series/LROLongRangeOpticforfMRIandMEG/tabid/69/Default.aspx.
The eye tracker tracks subjects eye movement and pupil diameter in the scanner, allowing researchers to follow where a subject is looking on the LCD screen. Eye & Scene Monitors in the scanner console room provide real-time eyetracking and can be used to monitor how well the system is performing.
The Biopac GSR System, http://www.biopac.com/ResearchApplications.asp?Aid=46 is available to record subjects’ galvanic skin response while in the magnet.
A Dell PC is used to record GSR and eye-tracker data.