In this study, a novel partially parallel acquisition (PPA) method is presented which can be used to accelerate image acquisition using an RF coil array for spatial encoding. This technique, GeneRalized Autocalibrating Partially Parallel Acquisitions (GRAPPA) is an extension of both the PILS and VD-AUTO-SMASH reconstruction techniques. As in those previous methods, a detailed, highly accurate RF field map is not needed prior to reconstruction in GRAPPA. This information is obtained from several k-space lines which are acquired in addition to the normal image acquisition. As in PILS, the GRAPPA reconstruction algorithm provides unaliased images from each component coil prior to image combination. This results in even higher SNR and better image quality since the steps of image reconstruction and image combination are performed in separate steps. After introducing the GRAPPA technique, primary focus is given to issues related to the practical implementation of GRAPPA, including the reconstruction algorithm as well as analysis of SNR in the resulting images. Finally, in vivo GRAPPA images are shown which demonstrate the utility of the technique.
Copyright 2002 Wiley-Liss, Inc.