A novel two-axis micromechanical scanning transducer for handheld 3D ultrasound and photoacoustic imaging
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© 2016 SPIE. This paper reports the development of a new two-axis micromechanical scanning transducer for handheld 3D ultrasound imaging. It consists of a miniaturized single-element ultrasound transducer driven by a unique 2-axis liquid-immersible electromagnetic microactuator. With a mechanical scanning frequency of 19.532 Hz and an ultrasound pulse repetition rate of 5 kHz, the scanning transducer was scanned along 60 concentric paths with 256 detection points on each to simulate a physical 2D ultrasound transducer array of 60 × 256 elements. Using the scanning transducer, 3D pulse-echo ultrasound imaging of two silicon discs immersed in water as the imaging target was successfully conducted. The lateral resolution of the 3D ultrasound image was further improved with the synthetic aperture focusing technique (SAFT). The new two-axis micromechanical scanning transducer doesn't require complex and expensive multi-channel data acquisition (DAQ) electronics. Therefore, it could provide a new approach to achieve compact and low-cost 3D ultrasound and photoacoustic imaging systems, especially for handheld operations.
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