Dr. Cheryl Olman 2013 in AnkaraDr. Olman, Department of Psychology and Center for Magnetic Resonance Research, University of Minnesota, visited UMRAM on October 25, 2013, and gave a seminar on “separating multiple contributions to a single fMR signal".

Using high field MR imaging (at 3T and 7T), Dr Olman’s research is centered on fMRI methods and low-level vision. Lab webpage:

Talk abstract:

Because of its high spatial resolution, functional MRI is a powerful and popular tool for studying

Read more: Seminar by Dr. Olman, UMN

Although there are a lot of outgoing members of UMRAM, there are also new members of the research center. One of the new members is Berk Silemek. He is a recent graduate of Electrical and Electronics Engineering of the Bilkent University joined UMRAM as research engineer. Ateeq Ur Rehman is graduate of CASE of Islamabad, Pakistan. He is currently PhD student at UMRAM. Reyhan Ergün is a former engineer at ASELSAN and graduate of Middle East Technical University joined UMRAM as a PhD student as well. Redi Poni is a citizen of Albenia and graduate of Middle East Technical University. He joins UMRAM as an MS student. Complete list of current members can be found in the UMRAM web page.

Recently a US patent has been issued on prostatic interventions with patent number 8,521,257. This patent is as a result of hard work of Axel Kriger and late Robert Susil who was the former PhD student of Dr. Atalar. This device allows access to prostate while patient is inside an MRI scanner enabling prostatic interventions such as needle biopsy. The patent has been assigned to the Johns Hopkins University.

Ergin Atalar has been elected to the Academia Europaea. The Academia Europaea (the European Academy) is a non-profit organization. The members of academy are scientists and scholars who collectively aim to promote learning, education and research in Europe. Founded in 1988, with over 2000 members which includes leading experts from the physical sciences and technology, biological sciences and medicine, mathematics, the letters and humanities, social and cognitive sciences, economics and the law. Currently, 18 members of the academy are from Turkish Universities. Four of these (Bilal Tanatar, Salim Ciraci, Ekmel Ozbay and Ergin Atalar) are from Bilkent University.

Two new faculty members, Asst. Prof. Emine Ulku Saritas and Asst. Prof. Tolga Cukur, have joined UMRAM in August 2013. Both faculty members are also affiliated with the Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering of Bilkent University. Prior to joining UMRAM, Dr. Saritas completed her PhD in Electrical Engineering at Stanford University in 2009, working on high-resolution diffusion-weighted imaging for targeted regions. She then performed her postdoctoral research on a novel imaging method called magnetic particle imaging (MPI) at University of California, Berkeley. Dr. Cukur received his PhD degree in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University in 2009,  working on novel contrast generation and image reconstruction methods for rapid MRI. He then joined University of California, Berkeley as a postdoctoral researcher, where he worked on computational modeling of the human visual system using functional MRI. 


In September, Dr Dicle Dövencioğlu joined UMRAM as a postdoctoral researcher. During her PhD, Dr Dövencioğlu studied the visual perception of surfaces and shapes in the University of Birmingham, UK. She has now started working with Dr Katja Dörschner in the PRISM Project.   

Dr. Esra Abaci Turk received a Ph.D. degree from the Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering of Bilkent University in June 2013. Her thesis title is "Novel Methods and Analysis of B0 and B1 Gradients in Magnetic Resonance Imaging." In her PhD studies, first she investigated the electric field distribution as a result of gradient coils. Later she derived a Fourier domain representation of the Bloch-Siegert shift. Finally she used B1 gradient field to image shear waves inside stiff objects. She received her BS degree from Middle East Technical University and her MS degree from Bilkent University. She plans to continue her academic carrier at MIT as an M+Vision Madrid-MIT postdoctoral fellow. Her husband, Ata Turk also received the PhD degree from Department of Computer Engineering. Ata will continue his carrier at Yahoo research at Barcelona.