<p>Volumetric ultrasound imaging of blood flow with microbubbles enables a more complete visualization of the microvasculature. Sparse arrays are ideal candidates to perform volumetric imaging at reduced manufacturing complexity and cable count. However, due to the small number of transducer elements, sparse arrays often come with high clutter levels, especially when wide beams are transmitted to increase the frame rate. In this study, we demonstrate with a prototype sparse array probe and a diverging wave transmission strategy, that a uniform transmission field can be achieved. With the implementation of a spatial coherence beamformer, the background clutter signal can be effectively suppressed, leading to a signal to background ratio improvement of 25 dB. With this approach, we demonstrate the volumetric visualization of single microbubbles in a tissue-mimicking phantom as well as vasculature mapping in a live chicken embryo chorioallantoic membrane. </p>

doi.org/10.1109/TUFFC.2021.3086597, hdl.handle.net/1765/136744
IEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Luxi Wei, G. (Geraldi) Wahyulaksana, K.B.A. (Bram) Meijlink, Alessandro Ramalli, Emile Noothout, MD Verweij, … H.J. (Rik) Vos. (2021). High Frame Rate Volumetric Imaging of Microbubbles Using a Sparse Array and Spatial Coherence Beamforming. IEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control, 68(10), 3069–3081. doi:10.1109/TUFFC.2021.3086597