This proposal describes a novel, low-cost, high-performance hand-held Doppler ultrasound imaging system to meet the clinical needs from simple vessel location to advanced vascular diagnostic techniques such as elasticity imaging. This research proposal integrates proven fundamental techniques with modern technology. The proposed device revisits original ultrasound Doppler flow measurement techniques, but significantly improves on them using an innovative engineering design with an accurate track and hold front-end, low-speed and low-cost ADCs (analog to digital converters) with an innovative magnetic drive system and distributed signal processing architecture to realize a highly flexible an ultra-lightweight, handheld, wireless imager capable of 2D imaging at a manufacturing cost that was previously impossible to realize. For this project essential components include PW Doppler using our proprietary electromagnetic drive system to generate the 2D measurement field. We further investigate a simplified method of image acquisition using low speed ADC's and accurate lock-and-hold for B-scan capabilities. We expand the imaging capabilities by incorporating proprietary signal processing algorithms that leverage modern, miniaturized electronic components and high bandwidth wireless technology, such as 802.11n, to integrate low-level ultrasound signal generation, acquisition and pre-processing in the transducer-display module and then distribute (remotely perform) the higher-level signal processing, image construction and image processing. Decoupling the processing, sensing and visualization components allow computing platforms to be optimized to perform these tasks. Our software and hardware simplifies and maintains the performance seen in higher cost bulkier systems. This proposal builds upon extensive work that will reduce the risk for successful commercial translation of this NIH sponsored technology.
This proposal will implement and test a novel, low cost, hand-held ultrasound system with proprietary distributed signal processing to meet the clinical needs for vascular ultrasound. The proposed device and study integrates proven fundamental techniques with modern technology.