AbstractsBiology & Animal Science

All-optical ultrasound transducers for high resolution imaging

by Clay Sheaff

Institution: University of Minnesota
Year: 2014
Keywords: Optics; Photoacoustic; Ultrasound; Photoacoustic; Ultrasound; Biomedical engineering
Record ID: 2044003
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/11299/171722


High frequency ultrasound (HFUS) has increasingly been used within the past few decades to provide high resolution (< 200 µm) imaging in medical applications such as endoluminal imaging, intravascular imaging, ophthalmology, and dermatology. The optical detection and generation of HFUS using thin films offers numerous advantages over traditional piezoelectric technology. Circumvention of an electronic interface with the device head is one of the most significant given the RF noise, crosstalk, and reduced capacitance that encumbers small-scale electronic transducers. Thin film Fabry-Perot interferometers - also known as etalons - are well suited for HFUS receivers on account of their high sensitivity, wide bandwidth, and ease of fabrication. In addition, thin films can be used to generate HFUS when irradiated with optical pulses - a method referred to as Thermoelastic Ultrasound Generation (TUG). By integrating a polyimide (PI) film for TUG into an etalon receiver, we have created for the first time an all-optical ultrasound transducer that is both thermally stable and capable of forming fully sampled 2-D imaging arrays of arbitrary configuration. Here we report (1) the design and fabrication of PI-etalon transducers; (2) an evaluation of their optical and acoustic performance parameters; (3) the ability to conduct high-resolution imaging with synthetic 2-D arrays of PI-etalon elements; and (4) work towards a fiber optic PI-etalon for in vivo use. Successful development of a fiber optic imager would provide a unique field-of-view thereby exposing an abundance of prospects for minimally-invasive analysis, diagnosis, and treatment of disease.