Contrast imaging with chirped excitation

Yang Sun, Dustin E. Kruse, Katherine W. Ferrara

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


Coded excitation has been successfully used in imaging to increase the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) and penetration depth. With a contrast agent, wideband signals have been hypothesized to increase the contrast-to-tissue ratio (CTR). However, nonlinear properties of contrast agents make decoding difficult when applying coded excitation to contrast imaging. We propose two chirped excitation methods to image contrast agents, with a mechanical index (MI) ranging from 0.05 to 0.34. In the single chirp method, one chirp is transmitted, followed by a clutter filter to reject tissue echoes, then a matched filter is used to recover range resolution. In the chirp sequence method, an increasing and decreasing chirp sequence is transmitted followed by subtraction of the compressed echoes to reject tissue echoes (assuming tissue is a linear scatterer at low MI). Ten independent acoustic experiments were performed to evaluate the CTR for chirp and tone burst insonation, with the same spatial peak temporal averaged intensity (ISPTA). A significant increase in CTR, ranging from 4 dB to 8 dB, is observed for chirped excitation as compared with tone burst insonation, at an ISPTA of 0.1 and 0.3 mW/cm2 (P ≤ 5e-3). To achieve the same CTR of 15 dB, the spatial peak pulse averaged intensity (ISPPA) can be decreased by 6 dB for chirp insonation as compared with tone burst insonation (P < le-5). Additionally, an increase of more than 10 dB in tissue rejection ratio (TRR) is observed for a chirp sequence insonation compared to tone burst phase inversion for this set of parameters (P ≤ le-9). Deconvolution of the linear microbubble response from the received echoes is proposed as a method to recover spatial resolution. The difference in the axial resolution resulting from chirp and three-cycle tone burst insonation is approximately 220 μm. The difference in the mainlobe width between experimental and predicted compressed echoes is less than 20%. The sidelobe amplitude is 9 dB to 16 dB below the mainlobe with a transmitted I SPTA from 0.1 to 6.6 mW/cm2.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)520-529
Number of pages10
JournalIEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics


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