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Digital Processor for Removing Redundancy From Echographical Signals

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000083095D
Original Publication Date: 1975-Mar-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-28
Document File: 4 page(s) / 54K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Chow, CK: AUTHOR [+3]

Abstract

Echography is a diagnostic procedure which utilizes ultrasonic energy to visualize an organ, for instance, a human heart. Described in the IBM Technical Disclosure Bulletin, Vol. 17, No. 10, March 1975, pages 3154 to 3158, is an article entitled "Digital Processor For Data Compaction And Image Enhancement of Echographical Signals" by C. K. Chow et al, which sets forth that typically in echography there is massive redundant data produced and collected, unnecessarily. As described in that article, a special digital processor may be employed as the interface between the echographic system and the digital computer, to process and compact, i.e., remove the redundant data.

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Digital Processor for Removing Redundancy From Echographical Signals

Echography is a diagnostic procedure which utilizes ultrasonic energy to visualize an organ, for instance, a human heart.

Described in the IBM Technical Disclosure Bulletin, Vol. 17, No. 10, March 1975, pages 3154 to 3158, is an article entitled "Digital Processor For Data Compaction And Image Enhancement of Echographical Signals" by C. K. Chow et al, which sets forth that typically in echography there is massive redundant data produced and collected, unnecessarily. As described in that article, a special digital processor may be employed as the interface between the echographic system and the digital computer, to process and compact, i.e., remove the redundant data.

As in the above-mentioned article, this description is directed to a special digital processor for detecting and removing redundant data in reflected echographical signals. Typically, redundancy may exist in the reflected ultrasonic signals, due to the fact the operator holds the ultrasonic probe at the same location for an excessive period of time. Alternatively, the operator may lift the probe away from the detection surface, thereby making the reflecting signals unintelligible.

A further difficulty in using digital storage devices in echography, resides in the fact that there is a mismatch between the data rate of the ultrasonic signals and that of a mass storage device. The diagnostic ultrasonic signal rate is typically of the order of several MHx, while the data rate of a digital magnetic tape unit, for example, is of the order of ten kilo bytes per second. This mismatch in data rate is solved by averaging the ultrasonic signals over a specified period of time.

In the arrangement shown in the figure, the X and Y coordinates of the ultrasonic transducer probe tip and its angle theta are monitored, and if they do not appreciably change within a specified interval of time (the degree of change and the interval of time may be set by the operator before examination), the data received is not sent to the digital storage device. In addition, the power of the received ultrasonic signal is monitored, and when this power does not exceed a specified value (again set by the operator), the data is not sent to the storage device. The rationale behind the power level selection is that when ultrasonic energy propagates in air there is a very high attenuation, so that the power of the received signals is relatively small.

In the operation of the digital processor shown in the figure, clock generator 1 emits pulses at a rate of 1.024 MHz, for example, which pulses initiate digitization by A/D converter 3 of the reflected ultrasonic signals inputted at 5 after pickup from the transducer and detector, not shown. After a 1024 to 1 reduction in frequency timing generator 7 generates pulses at a rate of 1 KHz, for example, which pulses act to initiate a pulse generator, not shown. This pulse generator acts to produce...