Coherent multitransducer ultrasound (CoMTUS) creates an extended effective aperture through the coherent combination of multiple arrays, which results in images with enhanced resolution, extended field-of-view, and higher sensitivity. The subwavelength localization accuracy of the multiple transducers required to coherently beamform the data is achieved by using the echoes backscattered from targeted points. In this study, CoMTUS is implemented and demonstrated for the first time in 3-D imaging using a pair of 256-element 2-D sparse spiral arrays, which keep the channel count low and limit the amount of data to be processed. The imaging performance of the method was investigated using both simulations and phantom tests. The feasibility of free-hand operation is also experimentally demonstrated. Results show that, in comparison with a single dense array system using the same total number of active elements, the proposed CoMTUS system improves spatial resolution (up to ten times) in the direction where both arrays are aligned, contrast-to-noise ratio (CNR; up to 46%), and generalized CNR (gCNR; up to 15%). Overall, CoMTUS shows a narrower main lobe and higher CNR, which results in an increased dynamic range and better target detectability.
|Number of pages||10|
|Journal||IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON ULTRASONICS FERROELECTRICS AND FREQUENCY CONTROL|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Mar 2023|