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Ultrasonics. 2006 Dec 22;44 Suppl 1:e5-15. Epub 2006 Aug 11.

Synthetic aperture ultrasound imaging.

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Center for Fast Ultrasound Imaging, ├śrsted DTU, Building 348, Technical University of Denmark, DK-2800 Lyngby, Denmark. <>


The paper describes the use of synthetic aperture (SA) imaging in medical ultrasound. SA imaging is a radical break with today's commercial systems, where the image is acquired sequentially one image line at a time. This puts a strict limit on the frame rate and the possibility of acquiring a sufficient amount of data for high precision flow estimation. These constrictions can be lifted by employing SA imaging. Here data is acquired simultaneously from all directions over a number of emissions, and the full image can be reconstructed from this data. The paper demonstrates the many benefits of SA imaging. Due to the complete data set, it is possible to have both dynamic transmit and receive focusing to improve contrast and resolution. It is also possible to improve penetration depth by employing codes during ultrasound transmission. Data sets for vector flow imaging can be acquired using short imaging sequences, whereby both the correct velocity magnitude and angle can be estimated. A number of examples of both phantom and in vivo SA images will be presented measured by the experimental ultrasound scanner RASMUS to demonstrate the many benefits of SA imaging.

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