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The Secret Life of the Brain
History of the Brain 3-D Brain Anatomy Mind Illusions Scanning the Brain The Episodes:
Scanning the Brain Explore brain scanning technology:
MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) - Tour and MRI machine

The effect of the radio pulse
The effect of the radio pulse

The MRI machine next sends a radio pulse at the area of the body being scanned. The radio pulse makes some of the "uncancalled" atoms spin at a particular frequency and in a particular direction, depending on the type of tissue they make up. When the pulse shuts off, the atoms return to their natural alignment and release energy, giving off a signal that the MRI machine picks up. A computer processes the signals and produces an image of the different types of tissue.
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