The XeBox-E10 is Xemed’s fourth-generation system for producing the diagnostic drug MagniXene™. Xemed shipped its first XeBox-E10 to its clinical partners in the University of Virginia for a two month trial beginning in May 2011. Pilot studies of lung diseases supported by XeBox-E10 hyperpolarization infrastructure are scheduled at three other clinical partner sites in Xemed’s MagniXene™ Imaging Network later in 2011.
- Technology: Xemed has scaled up several technologies for XeBox-E10. The laser system is wavelength-locked to 795nm using an external cavity with a diffraction grating in Littrow configuration, yielding a 1.5kW beam with 0.3nm spectral full width and 5 mr divergence. The polarizing chamber is a finned copper structure thermally stabilized to a preset two-zone temperature profile. Gas mixture and pressure are controlled on board. High reproducibility systems saturate flowing gases with rubidium vapor and efficiently extract the vapor after polarization. An NMR measures polarization during and after production. Cryogenic systems maneuvered by robotics isolate the purified MagniXene™ in a high-strength magnetic field before thawing it into bags.
- IntellectualProperty: Xemed has licensed technologies from the University of New Hampshire that relate to the polarization method, the polarization apparatus, the spectrally-narrowed laser, the rising dewar cryogenic accumulator, and the method for thermal stabilization. Five patents have been awarded in the US, with one awarded and others pending in Europe, and several pending elsewhere.
- Portability&Robustness: The XeBox-E10 was designed with portability in mind. All components are encased in a protective steel frame optimized for rigidity using finite element analysis. The wheels are on springs. Internally, the laser rides on cushions inside this frame. The glass helix containing the rubidium is fully enclosed with metal and immersed in oil. Even the shipping palette is engineered to minimize shocks and accelerations.
- Automation: All steps of the polarization process, including warm-up, purge and measure bags, polarized gas, fill bags, and cool down, are controlled by an on-board computer interfaced to a National Instruments Compact-RIO controller. Quality parameters and other diagnostics are recorded and logged. The XeBox-E10 polarizer can be controlled and diagnosed for problems either locally or remotely through an Ethernet connection.
- Quality: The on-board NMR system is calibrated at its operational frequency using a water standard at reduced field (both B0 and B1). NMR measurements are performed on the flowing gas mixture and subsequently on the thawed pure MagniXene™.
- Environment: XeBox-E10 is designed to operate in small spaces. At 77.5” tall, it will fit through standard height doors. Its fully enclosed laser path allows for Class 1 operation (no special protections required.) Since essential components are water cooled, fan noise is kept to a minimum.
- Installation: XeBox-E10 requires connections for standard 30A of 208V 3phase electrical power, 6kW of facility chilled water, compressed air, and ethernet. The 33”x54” footprint of the equipment must be augmented by connections to several cylinders of compressed gas and a tank of liquid nitrogen.
- Service: Xemed provides off-site telephone service and on-site annual service for all XeBox-E10 polarizers in the field.