Abstract

We present semiquantitative photoacoustic images of small nanoparticle-containing objects having a wide range of contrast levels relative to the background. The images are obtained by a finite-element reconstruction algorithm that is based on the Helmholtz-like photoacoustic wave equation in the frequency domain. Our reconstruction approach is an iterative Newton method coupled with combined Marquardt and Tikhonov regularizations that can extract the spatial distribution of relative optical absorption property in heterogeneous media. We demonstrate experimental images in single- and multiple-object configurations with a circular scanning photoacoustic tomographic system. The results obtained show that millimeter-size nanoparticle-containing objects can be clearly detected in terms of position, size, and relative optical properties.

© 2005 Optical Society of America

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