Dr. Jonathan Sharp

Associate Professor

Department of Oncology

Division of Medical Physics
    Contact details are for academic matters only.

About Me

See my personal website for more:  https://sharpresearch.weebly.com/


I teach radiation physics in the Radiation Therapy Program.

I am developing MRI education for Radiation Therapists


Radio-Frequency Encoded Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
I am co-inventor of a novel MR imaging technology that eliminates the need for conventional imaging gradients. 'Gradient-free' imaging ('TRASE' - Transmit Array Spatial Encoding) is an entirely novel MRI approach which eliminates the traditional gradient coil system, eliminating bulk, cost and much complexity. This technology has the potential to substantially reduce the cost and increase the robustness of MRI. The work was featured in Nature 'Research Highlights' in September 2013.

MRI Techniques, Simulation and Image Formation
I have a long-standing interest in MRI data acquisition techniques ('pulse sequences') including the use of computer simulations. One example is a technique that I invented which retrospectively compensates for magnetic field shimming errors by combining signals from an array of detection coils.

MRI Systems and Technology
I have designed MRI control equipment (MRI consoles), two of which are currently in use running MRI research systems here in the Medical Physics division. Design of our own equipment allows us greater flexibility and scope for technological innovation than does the use of commercial systems.

Foundations of Quantum Mechanics
The topic of quantum foundations concerns efforts to find an 'interpretation' of quantum mechanics. Amongst physicists, there is remarkably little consensus on what quantum mechanics actually means, even though it is a tremendously successful and useful theory. The "Copenhagen Interpretation" of Niels Bohr is the traditional approach, but leaves much unsaid. With the development of quantum technologies, such as quantum computing and encryption, experiments are probing systems which may demand a more specific ontology. A better understanding of the causes of decoherence may be of great practical relevance for these technologies.

Real-time MRI in Radiotherapy
MRI offers superior tissue contrast and image quality than X-ray CT, but has only recently been integrated with radiotherapy treatment systems (see the linac-mr.ca website for more information). My research interest is in the MRI techniques needed for real-time control of external beam radiotherapy treatment to enable higher treatment accuracy in the presence of tumor motion.

Research Keywords

Electronics, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Medical Devices, Medical Imaging, Medical Physics, MRI, NMR, Nuclear Magnetic Resonance, Quantum Mechanics, Radiofrequency Coils, Radiofrequency Technology, Radiotherapy, radiotherapy mri, RF Coils, Software, Space Flight, Special Relativity, TRASE

Team Members

Hongwei Sun (Ph.D. student)  hongwei1@ualberta.ca

Pallavi Bohidar (Ph.D. student)

Aaron Purchase (Ph.D. student)