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Figure $$\PageIndex{1}$$: Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) uses superconducting magnets and produces high-resolution images without the danger of radiation. The image on the left shows the spacing of vertebrae along a human spinal column, with the circle indicating where the vertebrae are too close due to a ruptured disc. On the right is a picture of the MRI instrument, which surrounds the patient on all sides. A large amount of electrical current is required to operate the electromagnets (credit right: modification of work by “digital cat”/Flickr).