A Dutch researcher has developed a computer model that can predict the sound transmission of improved designs for ultrasound instruments. The computer model is capable of processing large quantities of data and can be run on both a personal computer (PC) and a parallel supercomputer.
Clinicians utilize diagnostic ultrasound to visualize organs and other internal structures of the human body. Investigators from Erasmus University Medical Center (Rotterdam, The Netherlands) and Oldelft Ultrasound (Röntgenweg, The Netherlands) are now using this program to design a new sonographic transducer. Dr. Koos Huijssen, from Delft University of Technology (The Netherlands), has been searching for a computer model that could predict the behavior of ultrasonic waves. Over the past 10 years, the images produced by ultrasound have been vastly improved by making partial use of the nonlinear nature of acoustic waves. Due to these developments, ultrasound can now be used for a larger group of patients.
Additional improvements could be realized by refining the ultrasound equipment, the transducer that generates the ultrasound, and the imaging method. However, this requires a computer model that can accurately predict the transmission of ultrasound. Dr. Huijssen is in the process of developing a model that makes calculations over a three-dimensional area that is larger than existing computer models can handle.
The major challenges in producing such a model are the enormous complexity of the problem and dealing with the required storage capacity and processing power. The model was developed in cooperation with the company VORtech Computing (Delft, The Netherlands), and it has demonstrated to have an excellent performance level.
Erasmus University Medical Center
Delft University of Technology