Single-bit reception with coded excitation for lightweight advanced ultrasonic imaging systems

Nicolson, Ewan and Lines, David and Mohseni, Ehsan and MacLeod, Charles Norman (2024) Single-bit reception with coded excitation for lightweight advanced ultrasonic imaging systems. IEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control. (

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The demand for an efficient and reliable ultrasonic phased array imaging system is not unique to a single industry. Today’s imaging systems can be enhanced in a number of areas including; improving scanning and processing times, reducing data storage requirements, simplifying hardware and prolonging probe lifespan. In this work, it is shown that by combining the use of Coded Excitation with single-bit data capture, a number of these areas can be improved. Despite using single-bit receive data, resolution can be recovered through the coded excitation pulse compression process, and shown to produce high Signal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR) images of Phase Coherence Imaging (PCI) and Total Focusing Method (TFM) of tip diffraction in a carbon steel sample. Comparison with conventional single-cycle transmission pulses has shown that little imaging performance degradation is seen despite a significant reduction in data resolution and size. This has also been shown to be effective at low excitation voltages with gain compensation due to the obsolescence of signal saturation concerns when considering single-bit receive data. The ability to compute high-resolution ultrasonic images from low-resolution input data at low transmission voltages has important implications for data compression, acquisition & imaging performance, operator safety and hardware simplification for ultrasonic imaging systems across industrial and medical fields.

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