Digital ultrasound probes integrate the analog front end in the housing of the probe handle and provide a digital interface instead of requiring an expensive coaxial cable harness to connect. Current digital probes target the portable market and perform the bulk of the processing (beamforming) on the probe, which enables the probe to be connected to commodity devices, such as tablets or smartphones, running an ultrasound app to display the image and control the probe. Thermal constraints limit the number of front-end channels as well as the complexity of the processing. This prevents current digital probes to support advanced modalities, such as vector flow or elastography, requiring high-frame-rate imaging. In this paper, we present Light Probe, a digital ultrasound probe, which integrates a 64-channel 100- extV- ext pp TX/RX front end, including analog-to-digital conversion (up to 32.5 MS/s at 12 bit), and is equipped with an optical high-speed link (26.4 Gb/s) providing sustainable raw samples access to all the channels, which allows the processing to be performed on the connected device without thermal power constraints. By connecting the probe to a graphics processing unit-equipped PC, we demonstrate the flexibility of software-defined B-mode imaging using conventional and ultrafast methods. We achieve plane-wave and synthetic aperture imaging with frame rates from 30 up to 500 Hz consuming between 5.6 and 10.7 W. By using a combination of power and thermal management techniques, we demonstrate that the probe can remain within operating temperature limits even without active cooling, while never having to turn the probe off for cooling, hence providing a consistent quality of service for the operator.

LightProbe: A Digital Ultrasound Probe for Software-Defined Ultrafast Imaging

Benini L.
2019

Abstract

Digital ultrasound probes integrate the analog front end in the housing of the probe handle and provide a digital interface instead of requiring an expensive coaxial cable harness to connect. Current digital probes target the portable market and perform the bulk of the processing (beamforming) on the probe, which enables the probe to be connected to commodity devices, such as tablets or smartphones, running an ultrasound app to display the image and control the probe. Thermal constraints limit the number of front-end channels as well as the complexity of the processing. This prevents current digital probes to support advanced modalities, such as vector flow or elastography, requiring high-frame-rate imaging. In this paper, we present Light Probe, a digital ultrasound probe, which integrates a 64-channel 100- extV- ext pp TX/RX front end, including analog-to-digital conversion (up to 32.5 MS/s at 12 bit), and is equipped with an optical high-speed link (26.4 Gb/s) providing sustainable raw samples access to all the channels, which allows the processing to be performed on the connected device without thermal power constraints. By connecting the probe to a graphics processing unit-equipped PC, we demonstrate the flexibility of software-defined B-mode imaging using conventional and ultrafast methods. We achieve plane-wave and synthetic aperture imaging with frame rates from 30 up to 500 Hz consuming between 5.6 and 10.7 W. By using a combination of power and thermal management techniques, we demonstrate that the probe can remain within operating temperature limits even without active cooling, while never having to turn the probe off for cooling, hence providing a consistent quality of service for the operator.
IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON ULTRASONICS FERROELECTRICS AND FREQUENCY CONTROL
Hager P.A.; Benini L.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11585/724591
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