Coded pulse excitation for ultrasonic strain imaging

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Decorrelation strain noise can be significantly reduced in low echo-signal-to-noise (eSNR) conditions using coded excitation. Large time-bandwidth-product (>30) pulses are transmitted into tissue mimicking phantoms with 2.5-mm diameter inclusions that mimic the elastic properties of breast lesions. We observed a 5-10 dB improvement in eSNR that led to a doubling of the depth of focus for strain images with no reduction of spatial resolution. In high eSNR conditions, coded excitation permits the use of higher carrier frequencies and shorter correlation windows to improve the attainable spatial resolution for strain relative to that obtained with conventional short pulses. This paper summarizes comparative studies of strain imaging in noise-limited conditions obtained by short pulses and four common aperiodic codes (chirp, Barker, suboptimal, and Golay) as a function of attenuation, eSNR and applied strain. Imaging performance is quantified using SNR for displacement (SNR d), local modulation transfer function (LMTF), and contrast-to-noise ratio for strain (CNR ε). We found that chirp and Golay codes are the most robust for imaging soft tissue deformation using matched filter decoding. Their superior performance is obtained by balancing the need for low-range lobes, large eSNR improvement, and short-code duration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)231-240
Number of pages10
JournalIEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2005
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Instrumentation
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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