Scanning Approval Procedure

Operation of the Siemens MRI scanner requires approval by the directors and the operations manager of the facility under all circumstances. The following training policy has been established to provide a safe environment for the non-MRI technologist to become trained to safely operate the MRI scanner (Primary Operator), or to be proficient in MRI safety rules and being able to assist a primary operator (Secondary Operator).


Secondary Operator:

  • A person who has successfully completely the MRI safety training as outlined below
  • The purpose of a secondary operator is to assist the primary operator in case of an emergency
  • A secondary operator is NOT qualified or allowed to operate the MRI scanner

Primary Operator:

  • The primary operator has successfully completed the MRI safety training and has successfully passed the practical evaluation as MRI operator
  • Only primary operator may operate the MRI scanner

Safety training

Please contact Nathan Ooms ( to complete the following training procedures.

Any Purdue or IU graduate, undergraduate, faculty, or staff member can become a secondary operator.  Equally, student, staff and faculty members from another university can become a secondary operator when in visiting status at Purdue.  Undergraduate students cannot become primary users 
  • To become a secondary operator, you must contact the MRI associate (Nathan Ooms) to complete the following:
    • Tour the Purdue MRI Facility
    • Demonstrate familiarity with emergency procedures at the Purdue MRI facility
    • Watch an MRI safety video
    • Complete an assessment of practical MRI safety knowledge
    • Become approved as secondary operator by the Purdue MRI associate
  • To become a primary operator, you must:
    • Be a current secondary operator
    • Be CPR trained with a valid CPR certification card
    • For human scanning: Have valid CITI Human Subjects Research certification as Biomedical Research Investigator and key personnel
    • Assist a primary operator for at least 10 hours of documented scanning time; prior scanning experience at another facility can be used to reduce, but not eliminate, the number of training hours
    • Set-up and perform at least three scan sessions with human subjects* supervised by a primary operator
    • Successfully pass a practical evaluation test administered by the operations manager or one of the directors. This practical evaluation test consists of completing a scanning session autonomously, without any help from the operation manager who is present as an observer

* A primary operator may be certified for animal scanning only. In this case the training sessions and evaluation test may be done on the respective animal models. 

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