Abstract

Spatial resolution in photoacoustic and thermoacoustic tomography is ultrasound transducer (detector) bandwidth limited. For a circular scanning geometry the axial (radial) resolution is not affected by the detector aperture, but the tangential (lateral) resolution is highly dependent on the aperture size, and it is also spatially varying (depending on the location relative to the scanning center). Several approaches have been reported to counter this problem by physically attaching a negative acoustic lens in front of the nonfocused transducer or by using virtual point detectors. Here, we have implemented a modified delay-and-sum reconstruction method, which takes into account the large aperture of the detector, leading to more than fivefold improvement in the tangential resolution in photoacoustic (and thermoacoustic) tomography. Three different types of numerical phantoms were used to validate our reconstruction method. It is also shown that we were able to preserve the shape of the reconstructed objects with the modified algorithm.

© 2014 Optical Society of America

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