25 March 2011 An object-oriented multi-threaded software beamformation toolbox
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Focusing and apodization are an essential part of signal processing in ultrasound imaging. Although the fundamental principles are simple, the dramatic increase in computational power of CPUs, GPUs, and FPGAs motivates the development of software based beamformers, which further improves image quality (and the accuracy of velocity estimation). For developing new imaging methods, it is important to establish proof-of-concept before using resources on real-time implementations. With this in mind, an effective and versatile Matlab toolbox written in C++ has been developed to assist in developing new beam formation strategies. It is a general 3D implementation capable of handling a multitude of focusing methods, interpolation schemes, and parametric and dynamic apodization. Despite being flexible, it is capable of exploiting parallelization on a single computer, on a cluster, or on both. On a single computer, it mimics the parallization in a scanner containing multiple beam formers. The focusing is determined using the positions of the transducer elements, presence of virtual sources, and the focus points. For interpolation, a number of interpolation schemes can be chosen, e.g. linear, polynomial, or cubic splines. Apodization can be specified by a number of window functions of fixed size applied on the individual elements as a function of distance to a reference point, or it can be dynamic with an expanding or contracting aperture to obtain a constant F-number, or both. On a standard PC with an Intel Quad-Core Xeon E5520 processor running at 2.26 GHz, the toolbox can beamform 300.000 points using 700.000 data samples in 3 seconds using a transducer with 192 elements, dynamic apodization in transmit and receive, and cubic splines for interpolation. This is 19 times faster than our previous toolbox.
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Jens Munk Hansen, Jens Munk Hansen, Martin Christian Hemmsen, Martin Christian Hemmsen, Jørgen Arendt Jensen, Jørgen Arendt Jensen, } "An object-oriented multi-threaded software beamformation toolbox", Proc. SPIE 7968, Medical Imaging 2011: Ultrasonic Imaging, Tomography, and Therapy, 79680Y (25 March 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.878178; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.878178

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