Fundamental Correlation Lengths of Coherent Speckle in Medical Ultrasonic Images

Robert F. Wagnef, Michael F. Ins An A, Stephen W. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Refinements to previous analyses of the natural correlation lengths within simple images and between images to be compounded are presented. Comparison of theoretical and experimental results show very good agreement for the case of Rayleighs scattering media: the correlation length within a simple image is comparable to the resolution cell size; the correlation length between images to be spatially compounded is comparable to, but smaller than, the transducer on array aperture; and the correlation length between images to be frequency-compounded becomes a frequency comparable to their bandwidth. Complications arising from the presence of specular scattering or due to the presence of just a few scatterers are considered. It is shown that straightforward solutions exist for either of these problems taken by itself. When they occur in combination, calibration techniques may lead to unambiguous identification of the contributions to the scattering from diffuse or incoherent scattering and from specular or coherent scattering, and to estimation of the density of diffuse scatterers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)34-44
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1988
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Instrumentation
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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