Significance: Practical implementation of acousto-optic imaging (AOI) encounters difficulties that prevent it from rapid adoption in clinical use. In many practical medical applications, the region of interest may be accessed only from one side, and using a water tank for coupling is not feasible. The solution might be to use reflection-mode imaging with an electronically scanned ultrasound (US) focus. Such an approach, however, entails considerable challenges.
Aim: The possibilities of detecting and localizing light-absorbing inclusions inside turbid media by combining reflection-mode AOI conducted using a one-dimensional US array with electronic scanning of the US focus are investigated experimentally and signal processing algorithms that could be used for this purpose are introduced.
Approach: We determine the speckle contrast decrease due to the acousto-optic effect as a function of the US focal point coordinates. Different signal postprocessing techniques are investigated.
Results: A significant decrease in the determined speckle contrast difference values is observed due to the presence of light-absorbing inclusions. However, local minima occur in the plots only under specific conditions. Subtracting individual distributions and determining symmetry deviations allow for localizing the inclusions.
Conclusions: Detection and localization of optically distinct regions are possible using the introduced approach. Signal postprocessing is required in a general case.
- Acousto-optic imaging
- Electronic focus scanning
- Reflection mode
- Ultrasound linear array