1 May 1996 High-resolution medical ultrasound arrays using smart materials technology
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Abstract
Current ultrasound images have relatively low contrast (high levels of clutter) and resolution. Image quality could be dramatically improved if 2D ultrasound transducer arrays were available to perform the scans. These improvements would come from reducing clutter by eliminating target echoes that the beam width of a 1D array causes to be superimposed on a scan plane, and enhancing resolution by enabling the use of algorithms which correct the wavefront distortion introduced by propagation through tissue. The advent of 2D arrays would also enable 3D images to be displayed--eventually in real time. The fabrication of 2D ultrasound arrays is, however, very difficult. This stems from the acoustic requirements of the array (aperture, pitch and element size) which combine together to dictate large numbers (> 1000) of very-low capacitance (< 10 pF) elements. The technology problems revolve around interconnecting the elements and reducing signal losses due to stray capacitance and impedance mismatch. This paper will show how the development of composite smart materials involving the integration of electromechanical elements with electronics is being extended to the development of relatively-inexpensive high-sensitivity 2D ultrasound arrays.
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Keith Bridger, Paul J. Caldwell, Phillip Kuhn, Stephen R. Winzer, "High-resolution medical ultrasound arrays using smart materials technology", Proc. SPIE 2721, Smart Structures and Materials 1996: Industrial and Commercial Applications of Smart Structures Technologies, (1 May 1996); doi: 10.1117/12.239143; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.239143
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KEYWORDS
Ultrasonography

Transducers

Chemical elements

Smart materials

Acoustics

Signal attenuation

Electronics

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