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ANN ARBOR, MI, United States

Sonetics Ultrasound, Inc. | Date: 2011-09-25

A wireless intercom has a releasably coupled wired interface to an external aircraft communications socket and the wireless intercom is coupled to the aircraft proximate the socket, preferably in a custom bag hung by a releasable mechanical coupling to the aircraft. The wireless intercom provides signal communication and management between a ground crew tug driver headset and the pilot via the socket and, in various embodiments, to a trainer headset and/or to one or more wing walker headsets. If the wireless intercom loses communications with the tug operator headset during ground operations, an alarm is sent to the pilot via the socket. The wireless intercom, in alternate embodiments, enforces a priority scheme for calls going to one or more of the headsets. The wireless intercom and headsets are powered by rechargeable batteries. Each embodiment includes a customized weather-resistant case for holding at least the other elements of that embodiment.

Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 144.87K | Year: 2009

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): The goal of the proposed program is to address several technical feasibility questions (in Phase I), and then demonstrate (in a subsequent Phase II) incorporation of Sonetics' groundbreaking CMUT-in-CMOS ultrasound transducer technology into a novel, high-performance 2D ultrasound array suitable for commercial applications. Phase I specific aims will investigate bandwidth improvement for 2D array elements, scaling and enhancement of on-chip readout circuits, and reduction of dielectric charging effects related to device membrane sealing layers. This phase will culminate with the fabrication and characterization of a 64-element 2D array prototype, which will be used to evaluate the imaging potential of a larger scale array. Full implementation into a prototype scanhead (including a 128x128 element CMUT array) suitable for real-time 3D imaging would be demonstrated in Phase II, with the long-term goal of commercializing the technology (as well as other CMUT-in-CMOS-based products) for the ultrasound equipment market, forecast to be 3.75B globally by 2010. The academic segment of this market would benefit from the practical realization of fully-populated 2D ultrasound arrays, which will improve the quality and speed of 3D imaging for disease diagnosis. As well, the potential of CMUT-based scanheads to reduce the largest cost element of many state-of-the-art ultrasound systems, while simultaneously exhibiting improved imaging capability, will provide increased opportunity for researchers and students to undertake real-time, in vivo studies of living systems-something 3D ultrasound is uniquely positioned to do from a cost, availability, and convenience perspective (vs. MRI, PET, or CT, for example, all of which require expensive, dedicated facilities and technicians). The clinical market stands to gain similarly, as 3D ultrasound provides safe, convenient, real-time imaging technology-enabling improved triage and better patient outcomes, lower-cost imaging, and reduced staffing needs, all of which will serve the U.S. healthcare industry well as it seeks to control skyrocketing costs. PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: Potential benefits to public health from the successful development of Sonetics' novel ultrasound transducer technology include: improved availability and affordability of high-quality 3D medical imaging for disease diagnosis; improved medical training as low-cost 3D ultrasound enters the classroom; and lowered health-care costs for society as a whole, as better ultrasound improves clinical triage and patient outcomes. Furthermore, ultrasound is the only technology with the potential to become a convenient, safe, real-time imaging tool for use in limited-budget facilities such as lowincome health clinics.

Sonetics Ultrasound, Inc. | Date: 2013-04-01

An ultrasound system and a method of manufacturing an ultrasound system comprising a base comprising a bore; a prismatic segment, coupled to the base, that defines a set of surfaces surrounding the bore; a set of ultrasound transducer panels configured to emit ultrasound signals in a radial direction, each ultrasound transducer panel in the set of ultrasound transducer panels coupled to at least one surface of the set of surfaces, and an interconnect coupling a first ultrasound transducer panel in the set of ultrasound transducer panels to a second ultrasound transducer panel in the set of ultrasound transducer panels, wherein the interconnect facilitates coupling of the first ultrasound transducer panel and the second ultrasound transducer panel to the prismatic segment.

Lemmerhirt D.F.,Sonetics Ultrasound, Inc. | Cheng X.,Sonetics Ultrasound, Inc. | White R.D.,Tufts University | Rich C.A.,Sonetics Ultrasound, Inc. | And 3 more authors.
IEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control

As ultrasound imagers become increasingly portable and lower cost, breakthroughs in transducer technology will be needed to provide high-resolution, real-time 3-D imaging while maintaining the affordability needed for portable systems. This paper presents a 32 x 32 ultrasound array prototype, manufactured using a CMUT-in-CMOS approach whereby ultrasonic transducer elements and readout circuits are integrated on a single chip using a standard integrated circuit manufacturing process in a commercial CMOS foundry. Only blanket wet-etch and sealing steps are added to complete the MEMS devices after the CMOS process. This process typically yields better than 99% working elements per array, with less than 1.5 dB variation in receive sensitivity among the 1024 individually addressable elements. The CMUT pulseecho frequency response is typically centered at 2.1 MHz with a -6 dB fractional bandwidth of 60%, and elements are arranged on a 250 m hexagonal grid (less than half-wavelength pitch). Multiplexers and CMOS buffers within the array are used to make on-chip routing manageable, reduce the number of physical output leads, and drive the transducer cable. The array has been interfaced to a commercial imager as well as a set of custom transmit and receive electronics, and volumetric images of nylon fishing line targets have been produced. © 1986-2012 IEEE. Source

Agency: National Science Foundation | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 488.11K | Year: 2005

This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II project proposes to develop Micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) based, fully populated two-dimensional (2D) ultrasonic transducer array for three dimensional (3D) imaging in real time. Current 2D ultrasound systems employ a linear array of transducers to accumulate images. A planar array is universally acknowledged as the ideal approach for 3D image acquisition; however, multiple challenges must be overcome to make this practical, including: limitations in existing piezoelectric transducer technology, connecting an array with many elements (e.g., > 16,000) to front-end electronics, and processing large amounts of image data in real-time. The highly collaborative Phase II effort will build upon design and simulation results from the The system architecture will provide substantial flexibility in applying digital processing techniques, including adaptive beamforming, synthetic apertures, and phase aberration correction. The developed technology could bring many new capabilities to medical imaging, including volumetric flow, and real-time 3D imaging for tumor evaluation, image-guided surgery, and fetal echocardiography. Some of these include a breakthrough planar array technology overcomes a key bottleneck in the state-of-the-art in ultrasound, with spillover contributions to non-ultrasound fields (e.g. other MEMS, sonar, other medical imaging, nondestructive testing).

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