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Title: Medical Imaging Detectors Utilizing Gas-Microstrip Principles

Inventor(s):George Giakos

Disclosure 282 U.S. Patent not yet issued

The efficient capture and detection of ionizing radiation is of paramount significance.The medical imaging detector technology is dictated by criteria aimed at increasing spatial, temporal and contrast resolution, detective quantum efficiency (DQE) and the signal-to-noise ratio, while maintaining sufficient sampling rates.

Gas-microstrip detectors are very promising, ultra-high resolution, high internal gain and low noise, and high rate devices, originally proposed a few years ago by A. Oed, and then developed by several groups, for counting and imaging applications with emphasis on space research and high energy physics.

UA's researcher has taken this system concept and applied it for the first time to medical imaging technology.New cost effective and efficient techniques of imaging are being investigated with applications in x-ray digital radiography and nuclear medicine, with emphasis on dual-energy detection and quantitative autoradiography.

At present time, study of the applicability of the gas-microstrip detection principles on both the dual-energy detection and quantitative autoradiography are under investigation.The study comprises optimization of the gas composition medium, detector geometry and system response.By utilizing both the high resolution of the microstrip configuration and the high quantum efficiency of the gas medium it is possible to enhance significantly the image quality.

These enhanced image quality characteristics have great implications in digital radiography (DR), computed tomography (CT), microtomography and x-ray microscopy and nuclear medicine, namely, single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT), and positron emission tomography (PET).

Special features of the proposed technology are:

1.It provides an extremely high spatial resolution due to the micron or submicron size of the imaging signal collectors.

2.It provides an extremely high two-dimensional position resolution, due to back side sensing electrodes.

3.It provides high sensitivity, that implies a high detective quantum efficiency (DQE), due to the very high and noiseless internal amplification of the signal in the gas medium.

4.It provides elimination of electrostatic instabilities, due to the applied photolithographic techniques, which utilize microstrips instead of wires.

5.It can be built in very large detection areas at relatively low cost.




Inventor(s):T. Kyu, H. Chiu

Disclosure 252 Copyrighted

This invention relates to a personal computer (PC) Windows (R) based image analysis program for scattering(i.e. light, x-rays, neutron), diffraction, microscopy (i.e. optical, electron), and NMR imaging.

This software is dedicated to image analysis and scattering experiments comprised of 2-dimensional small and wide angle x-rays, neutrons, light scattering techniques.The programs are in a PC windows based format to expedite the speed of data analysis, ease of data handling, especially very large 2-D data files.

Analysis includes background subtraction, sensitivity correction, data smoothing, quadrant averaging, intensity scans in Azimuthal and Bragg's Angles, circular averaging, and various data analysis schemes such as Debye-Bueche, Kratky, Guinier, Porod, scattering invariant, orientation, etc.Program can generate 3-D graphs.

This software may be used in conjunction with CCD Camera/Detector Systems for Raman Spectroscopy, scattering, diffraction and optical or electron microscopy image analysis.Hardware requirements include IBM or IBM compatible system, 386 or higher processor, color monitor, and a minimum of 4 MB RAM.




Inventor(s):D. Smith, S. Bhat

Disclosure 192 U.S. Patent 5,588,428

The invention is directed to non-invasive methods and apparatus for three-dimensional measurement of surface profile and/or volume, and analysis of surface texture.Such measurements allow for evaluation of wound repair, assessment of surgical reconstructions or treatment of hypertrophic scarring, evaluation of polymerization reaction for polymer and elastomeric curing processes, fine art finger printing, or in any industrial process requiring quantitative monitoring of surface texture and profile. Both volume and surface texture are quantitatively measured very accurately, and the apparatus and method can be used on both soft and hard surfaces according to the above objectives.

The invention generally comprises an apparatus and method to image a three-dimensional surface for volumetric analysis and/or surface texture.The apparatus includes a laser source for emitting a predetermined wavelength beam which is reflected off the surface being imaged.A laser detector or sensor receives the reflected beam to generate a signal corresponding to the changes in the depth of the surface relative to the laser source, and can therefore be used to monitor changes in surface depth.Further, a sound source is provided for generating a coherent beam of sound waves which are reflected off the surface also.A sound detector receives a reflected sound wave to generate a signal corresponding to the surface texture.Control means for selectively operating the laser source and sound source are provided for generating the signals at a plurality of locations on the surface for analysis.

The apparatus may be portable, and provides a quick and accurate quantitative measurement of a surface, and can be used in association with both hard and soft surfaces.




Inventor(s):L. Roemer, N. Erdol

Disclosure 139 U.S. Patent 5,103,427

The present invention is generally directed to on apparatus and method of echo identification wherein the sources of echoes generated from interface boundaries in a medium may be more effectively identified in the processing of obtained waveform data to generate higher resolution in the obtained data.

The method of the present invention is particularly useful for performing ultrasound reflectometry and medical sonography by obtaining data representative of a medium being studied and suppressing signals from overlapping echo waveforms generated from obstacles adjacent on object under test.More particularly, the method of the invention enables the sources of such echo waveforms to be more effectively identified to yield an indication of the contribution of overlapping echoes to generate higher resolution data signals.

The processing includes generating a power spectral estimate of the data which is utilized to obtain a phase estimate thereof.The Maximum Entropy Estimation Method is used to obtain a reliable phase estimate which can then be processed to yield an indication of the delay time to an interface boundary in the medium.The sources of the echo waveforms can then be located and used to increase the resolution of the obtained data.

This technology provides a method and apparatus for identifying the locations of the sources of echoes contributing to data received in systems in applications such as ultrasound reflectometry, medical sonography, radar/sonar applications, acoustic non-destructive evaluation and testing, seismology, echocardiography and the like.



Inventor(s):P. Rinaldi

Disclosure 107 U.S. Patent 5,027,072

An acquisition method for multi-dimensional Fourier transform NMR data allows efficient accumulation of the data and provides artifact suppression in the acquired data under many circumstances.

The method comprises performing an excitation pulse sequence, having at least one evolution period, wherein excited nuclei will at least partially relax.A transient generated from the pulse sequence is collected and stored, and the sequence is repeated with the evolution period varied in a predetermined manner. Transient information is collected for all values of the evolution period.The phase of at least one RF pulse may be varied and the procedure repeated.Subsequently, transient information having common evolution periods may be signal averaged to obtain the NMR data.

The method avoids residual magnetization effects under many circumstances, and significantly reduces acquisition time for data collection in spectroscopy or imaging environments.