Switched Patents (Class 73/626)
  • Patent number: 10410822
    Abstract: A double-tilt in-situ nanoindentation platform for TEM (transmission electron microscope) belongs to the field of in-situ characterization of the mechanical property-microstructure relationship of materials at the nano- and atomic scale. The platform is consisted of adhesive area, support beams, bearing beams, sample loading stage and mini indenter. The overall structure of the platform is prepared by semiconductor microfabrication technology. The in-situ nanoindentation experiment can be driven by bimetallic strip, V-shaped electro-thermal beam, piezoelectric ceramics, electrostatic comb or shape memory alloys et. al. The sample is obtained by focused ion beam cutting. The integrated platform can be placed in the narrow space on the front end of the TEM sample holder, giving rise to the condition of double-axis tilt. The driving device drives the mini indenter to carry out in-situ nanoindentation, in-situ compression and in-situ bending and the like of the materials in TEM.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 11, 2016
    Date of Patent: September 10, 2019
    Assignee: BEIJING UNIVERSITY OF TECHNOLOGY
    Inventors: Xiaodong Han, Zhipeng Li, Shengcheng Mao, Xiaodong Wang, Chunqiang Zhuang, Jianfei Zhang, Qingsong Deng, Yadi Zhai, Taonan Zhang, Ze Zhang
  • Patent number: 10295665
    Abstract: A microbeamformer integrated circuit has sixty-lour microbeaauCormer channels which may be utilized with a 64-element or 128-element array transducer. Each microbeamformer channel includes a transmitter, a plurality of connection points for selectively coupling the transmitter to one or more transducer elements, a transmit/receive switch coupled to an output of the transmitter, and a receive channel including a variable delay. The connection points may be configured with only one connection point coupled to a transducer element, two connection points coupled to the same transducer element, or multiple connection points coupled to multiple transducer elements. The transmitter may also comprise a separate pulser coupled to each connection point. The receive channels are grouped in groups of sixteen which may be selectively coupled to one of two channel drivers to provide partially beamformed signals to the channels of a system beamformer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 27, 2009
    Date of Patent: May 21, 2019
    Assignee: Koninklijke Philips, N.V.
    Inventor: Andrew L. Robinson
  • Patent number: 10219783
    Abstract: A transmission circuit for ultrasonic diagnosis includes a delay processing circuit that delays a transmission signal pattern and an operational circuit that calculates a delay time. A transmission timing for supplying the transmission signal pattern to a plurality of piezo electric elements corresponding to a plurality of channels is approximated by a multi-dimensional polynomial with locations of the plurality of piezo electric elements being variables so that the transmission timing becomes linear or arc-like. Coefficients in the multi-dimensional polynomial are supplied to the transmission circuit for ultrasonic diagnosis. The delay time in the delay processing circuit is determined by a first coefficient. The operational circuit calculates the delay time based on a second coefficient.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 23, 2016
    Date of Patent: March 5, 2019
    Assignee: ABLIC INC.
    Inventors: Hiroyasu Yoshizawa, Satoshi Hanazawa, Tatsuya Odawara, Na Li
  • Patent number: 10123769
    Abstract: In the ultrasound diagnostic apparatus, the ultrasonic wave transmitter/receiver transmits and receives an ultrasonic beam to a subject to generate reception data; the delay correction unit corrects a delay time of the reception data to align a phase of the reception data; the reception aperture level setting unit sets two or more reception aperture levels of reception data from reception data after correction of the delay time; the image producer produces ultrasound images corresponding to the set reception aperture levels, by performing phase matching addition on the reception data after correction of the delay time; and the image quality determination unit determines image qualities of the ultrasound images corresponding to the set reception aperture levels and selects an ultrasound image having a predetermined image quality.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 24, 2014
    Date of Patent: November 13, 2018
    Assignee: FUJIFILM Corporation
    Inventor: Hiroaki Yamamoto
  • Patent number: 10107645
    Abstract: In an embodiment, a transducer device has a flexible substrate and a plurality of tiles coupled to the substrate. The tiles each include a plurality of piezoelectric transducer elements and a base adjoining and supporting the plurality of piezoelectric transducer elements. The substrate has disposed therein or thereon signal lines to serve as a backplane for communication to, from and/or among integrated circuitry of the tiles. In another embodiment, the integrated circuitry of the tiles are each pre-programmed to implement any of a respective plurality of operational modes. Signals exchanged with the tiles via the flexible substrate facilitate operation of the transducer device to provide a phased array of transducer elements.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 30, 2014
    Date of Patent: October 23, 2018
    Assignee: FUJIFILM DIMATIX, INC.
    Inventor: Arman Hajati
  • Patent number: 10092271
    Abstract: There is set forth herein a uterine probe having one or more transducer for detecting a uterine parameter. The one or more parameter can be a fetal heart rate. The one or more parameter can be uterine contraction. In one embodiment a uterine probe can include a transducer operative to emit sound waves for detection of a fetal heart rate (FHR). In one embodiment a uterine probe can include a transducer operative to emit sound waves for detection of a uterine contraction. The one or more transducer can be of a common technology or can be of different technology. In one embodiment a uterine probe can include one or more transducer that is operative to be driven in different signaling configurations. A first signaling configuration can be a signaling configuration for detection of a fetal heart rate. A second signaling configuration can be a signaling configuration for detection of uterine contraction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 13, 2012
    Date of Patent: October 9, 2018
    Assignee: CORNELL UNIVERSITY
    Inventors: George K. Lewis, Jr., William L. Olbricht, Steven Gelber, George K. Lewis, Sr.
  • Patent number: 10085723
    Abstract: The present invention relates to an ultrasound image acquisition device (46) for use together with a console device (16, 18) to form an ultrasound imaging system (10) and a corresponding method. The ultrasound image acquisition device (46) particularly comprises a recognition device for recognizing an operating mode of the ultrasound image acquisition device, wherein the recognition device is configured to recognize the operating mode depending on a type of the console device (16, 18) and/or an applicable communication standard of the interface (50). By this, a dual purpose image acquisition probe (14) may be provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 3, 2014
    Date of Patent: October 2, 2018
    Assignee: KONINKLIJKE PHILIPS N.V.
    Inventor: McKee Poland
  • Patent number: 10022779
    Abstract: A mechanically tuned rapid capacitive discharge forming apparatus and methods that utilize compliant and shock absorbing components in electrode assemblies in order to accommodate the stresses and strains of the thermally-expanding feedstock and maintain continuous electrical contact between the electrodes and the feedstock throughout the duration of the electrical discharge.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 8, 2015
    Date of Patent: July 17, 2018
    Assignees: Glassimetal Technology, Inc., Apple Inc.
    Inventors: Joseph P. Schramm, William L. Johnson, Marios D. Demetriou
  • Patent number: 9958420
    Abstract: A method for efficiently achieving full-matrix ultrasonic data capture which includes the steps of providing an ultrasound array apparatus, the ultrasound array apparatus further comprising a probe, collecting data over a plurality of inspection locations, generating a plurality of data matrices, each of the data matrices reflecting data collected at the locations, and collecting, initially, a subset of a quantity of data needed for reconstruction of each of the inspection locations. In the method, as the probe moves from collection location to collection location, a data matrix at a prior collection location is gradually filled in as the probe moves to subsequent collection locations. In certain embodiments physical scanning of a probe with few elements is replaced by electronically scanning using an array with many elements.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 6, 2013
    Date of Patent: May 1, 2018
    Assignee: BWXT Technical Services Group, Inc.
    Inventors: Steven J Younghouse, Daniel T MacLauchlan, Nicholas J Borchers
  • Patent number: 9901956
    Abstract: A system includes a transducer configured to emit ultrasound in response to receiving an electrical signal from a driving circuit. The transducer includes a first dimension that determines a frequency of the ultrasound and a second dimension that determines an impedance of the transducer. The frequency is independent of the second dimension.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 20, 2016
    Date of Patent: February 27, 2018
    Assignee: The Brigham and Women's Hospital, Inc.
    Inventor: Kullervo Hynynen
  • Patent number: 9706976
    Abstract: Ultrasound imaging systems can include a probe, and a cable that can be removably connected to the probe. The probes for ultrasound imaging systems may include a transducer array that emits acoustical energy and receives return reflections of the acoustical energy, a circuit board, a transmitter mounted on the circuit board and communicatively coupled to the transducer array for transmitting information relating to the return reflections, and a housing. The housing has an interior volume and the transducer array, the circuit board, and the transmitter are positioned in the interior volume. A battery pack may be removably mounted to the housing. The battery pack may provide electrical power for the transducer array.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 8, 2007
    Date of Patent: July 18, 2017
    Assignee: SIEMENS MEDICAL SOLUTIONS USA, INC.
    Inventors: Kevin S. Randall, Joseph A. Urbano, Lawrence A. Engle
  • Patent number: 9632063
    Abstract: The invention relates to a diagnostic apparatus 1 for detecting delamination in the thickness of a panel of laminated composite. The diagnostic apparatus can be used to inspect a panel having a non-constant thickness along its length. The diagnostic apparatus comprises an ultrasonic probe 30 intended to be brought into contact with the front face of the panel to be inspected, an electronic device 40 for controlling the emission and reception of ultrasonic pulses 51 by the ultrasonic probe 30, and a display device 41 having, notably, indicators showing the presence or absence of delamination in the panel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 17, 2013
    Date of Patent: April 25, 2017
    Assignees: Airbus Operations (SAS), European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company Eads France
    Inventors: Patrick Metayer, Marion Pages
  • Patent number: 9629611
    Abstract: Saturation of received signals and generation of artifacts that are associated with tap concentration are prevented from occurring even if the differences in the delay amount between each of transducers are small. The ultrasound diagnosis apparatus comprises a plurality of ultrasound transducers, a plurality of taps, a delay amount calculator, a channel distributor, and a delay processor. The delay amount calculator calculates a first delay amount. The channel distributor specifies the minimum delay amount and the maximum delay amount from the first delay amount. Further, the channel distributor divides the range from the minimum delay amount to the maximum delay amount by the number of taps, and relates each to a tap. The channel distributor also inputs a signal output from an ultrasound transducer to the tap related to the divided range including the corresponding first delay amount.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 3, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 25, 2017
    Assignees: TOSHIBA MEDICAL SYSTEMS CORPORATION, KABUSHIKI KAISHA TOSHIBA
    Inventors: Wataru Kameishi, Hiroyuki Shibanuma, Satoshi Kamiyama, Shuta Fujiwara, Gen Nagano, Takayuki Shiina
  • Patent number: 9517359
    Abstract: A device for treatment of an ocular pathology characterized in that it comprises at least one eye ring (1) wherein the proximal end of said eye ring (1) is suitable to be applied onto the globe and a generator (2,17) to generate ultrasound beam fixed on the distal end of the eye ring (1), the generator to generate ultrasound beam presenting a concave segment shape conformed along a single curvature corresponding to a single direction wherein the concavity is designed to be tuned towards the eyeglobe.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 18, 2009
    Date of Patent: December 13, 2016
    Assignees: EYE TECH CARE, INSTITUT NATIONAL DE LA SANTE ET DE LA RECHERCHE MEDICALE (INSERM)
    Inventors: Fabrizio Romano, Cyril Lafon, Jean-Yves Chapelon, Françoise Chavrier, Alain Birer, Laurent Farcy, Philippe Chapuis
  • Patent number: 9501955
    Abstract: A method and a system to simulate ultrasound images and hence for simulating the evaluation of a subject with such images as a diagnostic tool. For the purpose of simulating ultrasound images, these images may be considered to be planar slices of a given geometry. These slices are generated from the surface geometry of the portion of the subject which would receive the ultrasound waves if the ultrasound diagnostic procedure was actually be performed. Simulating such ultrasound images may therefore be performed by determining such images from surface models, and then rendering those ultrasound images at the desired position. The rendering of such simulated ultrasound images also optionally and preferably includes the simulation of the “grainy” quality of such images.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 20, 2002
    Date of Patent: November 22, 2016
    Assignee: SIMBIONIX LTD.
    Inventors: Edna Chosack, David Barkay, Ran Bronstein, Niv Fisher
  • Patent number: 9492142
    Abstract: In an ultrasonic diagnostic device S according to the present invention, a reference signal generation unit 30 generates a reference signal to be used in correlation processing based on a direct reception signal obtained by receiving a first ultrasonic signal prior to being transmitted to a subject. Consequently, the ultrasonic diagnostic device S configured in this manner is able to generate a more suitable reference signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 19, 2010
    Date of Patent: November 15, 2016
    Assignee: KONICA MINOLTA MEDICAL & GRAPHIC, INC.
    Inventor: Yoshiki Katou
  • Patent number: 9404897
    Abstract: Method and apparatus for the non-destructive inspection of a test object with a large material thickness by means of ultrasound. The apparatus includes an ultrasonic test probe with an ultrasonic transducer divided into a plurality of individually activatable transducer segments wherein the transducer segments are concentric circles or rings, or sections thereof. A first group j (j=1, 2, 3, . . . ) of transducer segments is selected in such a way that a parallel activation of these transducer segments results in a circular active surface Fj of the ultrasonic transducer (22). An ultrasound inspection of the test object is undertaken with the first group j (j=1, 2, 3, . . . ) of transducer segments, wherein they are activated in parallel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 12, 2012
    Date of Patent: August 2, 2016
    Assignee: GE Sensing & Inspection Technologies GMBH
    Inventor: York Oberdoerfer
  • Patent number: 9304192
    Abstract: A beamforming method includes generating a control signal for implementing a delay time for each of a plurality of transducers of each of a plurality of two-dimensional (2D) transducer-arrays, transmitting the control signal to a plurality of driving units respectively corresponding to the plurality of 2D transducer-arrays via an interposer that electrically connects the plurality of 2D transducer-arrays to each other, and driving each 2D transducer-array of the plurality of 2D transducer-arrays with a corresponding driving unit of the plurality of driving units according to the control signal transmitted via the interposer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 25, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 5, 2016
    Assignee: Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Jong-keun Song, Kyung-il Cho, Dong-wook Kim, Bae-hyung Kim
  • Patent number: 9188673
    Abstract: An ultrasound imaging method transmits ultrasound into a medium from a source and receives and samples signals resulting from interaction of the ultrasound with the medium for each of a plurality of sources. The sampled signals are stored. Criteria are applied to select subsets of the stored sampled signals. In some embodiments the criteria relate to locations of a source and/or receiving element corresponding to a sampled signal. Images are generated from the subsets.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 7, 2012
    Date of Patent: November 17, 2015
    Assignee: InnerVision Medical Technologies Inc.
    Inventors: Bhaskar Ramamurthy, Timothy J. Davies
  • Patent number: 9116225
    Abstract: Provided is a measuring apparatus, including: a moving mechanism for moving a probe in an elevation direction; a first delay and sum circuit for performing delay and sum of reception signals at individual positions along the elevation direction to output a first add signal; a signal extraction circuit for letting an output of the first delay and sum circuit to pass through delay circuits to output in parallel first add signals obtained at different positions; a second delay and sum circuit for performing delay and sum of the first add signals output from the signal extraction circuit to output a second add signal; and an image processing circuit for generating image data by using the second add signal. Accordingly, image resolution in the elevation direction may be improved with a simple structure without deteriorating an image obtaining speed in the measuring apparatus for obtaining an ultrasonic image.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 28, 2010
    Date of Patent: August 25, 2015
    Assignee: CANON KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Haruo Yoda, Katsuya Oikawa, Kenichi Nagae
  • Patent number: 9099206
    Abstract: According to an embodiment, a nuclear reactor monitoring device comprises: an ultrasonic wave transmission means which is installed on the outside surface of a reactor pressure vessel and transmits ultrasonic pulses to the interior of the reactor pressure vessel; an ultrasonic wave receiving means which is installed on the outside surface of the reactor pressure vessels and receives reflected pulses including ultrasonic waves from the ultrasonic pulses reflected by an inspection object in the reactor pressure vessel; a preprocessing means which specifies and removes the reflected ultrasonic pulses generated in the wall of the reactor pressure vessel from the reflected pulse signal received by the ultrasonic wave receiving means or selectively extracts the reflected pulse signal; and a calculation means which determines the vibration of the inspection object from the reflection pulse signal processed by the preprocessing means in accordance with the observation time of the inspection object.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 21, 2012
    Date of Patent: August 4, 2015
    Assignee: Kabushiki Kaisha Toshiba
    Inventors: Hidehiko Kuroda, Tooru Ootsubo
  • Patent number: 9091749
    Abstract: A reception circuit disposed within an ultrasound probe is provided. The reception circuit includes, at least one amplifying unit configured to amplify echo signals received by ultrasound transducers, and at least one delay unit connected to the amplifying unit and including a first circuit and a second circuit each configured to apply a delay time to an output from the amplifying unit, wherein the first and second circuits each have a plurality of capacitor banks. Each capacitor bank includes two or more capacitors each configured to write therein a signal amplified by the amplifying unit, wherein the two or more capacitors are different from one another in capacitance, write switches configured to write an output current into the first and second capacitors of the two or more capacitors, and read switches configured to read the output written into the first and second capacitors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 25, 2012
    Date of Patent: July 28, 2015
    Assignee: GE Medical Systems Global Technology Company, LLC
    Inventor: Shinichi Amemiya
  • Patent number: 9084574
    Abstract: The disclosed embodiments include a method, system, and device for conducting ultrasound interrogation of a medium. The method includes transmitting a non-beamformed or beamformed ultrasound wave into the medium, receiving more than one echoed ultrasound wave from the medium, and converting the received echoed ultrasound wave into digital data. The method may further transmit the digital data. The transmission may be wireless. The system may include a main unit, a remote unit, a locator module, transducer elements, an analog-to-digital converter in communication with the transducer elements, and a transmitter in communication with the analog-to-digital converter. The main unit and the remote unit may be part of an ultrasound imaging system and the remote unit may communicate with the main unit. The locator module may communicate with the remote unit or the main unit. The locator module may identify a location of the remote unit or the main unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 10, 2006
    Date of Patent: July 21, 2015
    Assignee: Siemens Medical Solution USA, Inc.
    Inventors: Kevin S. Randall, Michael G. Cannon, Anthony P. Lannutti, Joseph A. Urbano, Raymond F. Weymer, Jr.
  • Patent number: 9027404
    Abstract: The disclosed embodiments generally relate to non-destructive evaluation methods. More particularly, the disclosed embodiments relate to ultrasonic non-destructive evaluation methods for the evaluation of friction welded bladed discs (“blisks”). In an embodiment, a method for non-destructive evaluation of a bladed disc structure includes identifying a region of interest on the bladed disc structure; positioning an ultrasonic transducer and receiver in the region of interest; scanning the region of interest using the ultrasonic transducer and receiver to produce a scan image; and comparing the scan image against a reference image to determine the presence of an anomaly in the region of interest.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 17, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 12, 2015
    Assignee: Honeywell International Inc.
    Inventors: Surendra Singh, Frederick William Vensel, Robert John Hogan, Vincent Chung
  • Patent number: 8960005
    Abstract: Frequency-steerable acoustic transducers (FSATs) that allow directional generation or sensing of waves propagating in two-dimensional domains. Directionality is the result of the spatial filtering effect produced by the characteristic shape of the sensing surface. A wavenumber spiral FSAT (WS-FSAT) maps the direction of wave sensing in the [0°, 180°] range to a specific frequency component in the spectrum of the received signal. The use of a wavenumber spiral FSAT operating in sensing mode can be used for the localization of broadband acoustic events. One configuration includes a broadband source generating guided elastic waves in an isotropic plate. The WS-FSAT records the plate response and defines the source location through a time-frequency analysis of the received signal. The frequency selective response of the WS-FSAT directly maps the dominant component of the received signal to the direction of arrival of the incoming wave, thus greatly facilitating the source localization procedure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 12, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2015
    Assignee: Georgia Tech Research Corporation
    Inventors: Massimo Ruzzene, Matteo Senesi, Buli Xu
  • Patent number: 8960006
    Abstract: An ultrasonic inspection apparatus includes: an ultrasonic probe apparatus including an ultrasonic transducer; a drive element selecting section that selects a required piezoelectric vibrator of the ultrasonic transducer; a signal detecting circuit that detects an electric signal dependent on a reflected echo of an ultrasonic wave emitted from the selected piezoelectric vibrator; a signal processing section that produces data on an internal image of the inspection object based on the detected reflected echo; a second display unit that combines multiple pieces of image data acquired from the signal processing section and displays an integrated visualization data result; and an second input unit that is used to perform an operation command such as a command input to start or terminate an inspection or an a command to set inspection condition.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 18, 2008
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2015
    Assignee: Kabushiki Kaisha Toshiba
    Inventors: Hideo Isobe, Takahiro Ikeda, Ryoichi Arai
  • Patent number: 8925386
    Abstract: An ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus having an ultrasonic probe configured to transmit and receive an ultrasonic wave, a transmitter for configured to supply a signal to the ultrasonic probe and forming an ultrasonic beam, a receiver configured to receive a reception signal obtained by transmitting the ultrasonic beam to an object, a signal processor configured to form an ultrasonic image on the basis of the reception signal, a display unit configured to display the ultrasonic image, and a control unit configured to control the transmitter, the receiver, the signal processor and the display unit, comprising a setting unit configured to set an operation mode of the transmitter to a low power consumption operation mode or a high spatial resolution operation mode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 21, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 6, 2015
    Assignee: Hitachi Medical Corporation
    Inventor: Mitsuhiro Oshiki
  • Patent number: 8738339
    Abstract: A method of establishing position dependent focal laws and dynamically accessing these focal laws during inspection is disclosed comprising the steps of partitioning a CAD model into distinct geometric regions prior to inspection, generating a dedicated set of focal laws for each of the geometric regions, and associating each position of the scanner with one of the geometric regions. A method of compressing an A-Scan using a windowing technique is also disclosed. Additionally, methods for computing and displaying volumetric slices in real-time are disclosed. Finally, a method of firing multiple probes at different firing frequencies is disclosed, as well as a multi-probe inspection system that enables parallel firing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 5, 2009
    Date of Patent: May 27, 2014
    Assignee: Zetec, Inc.
    Inventors: Daniel Richard, Dirk Verspeelt, Frederic Morrow, Guy Maes, Jean-Francois Tremblay, Martin Garneau, Stephane Turgeon, Alexandre Charlebois
  • Patent number: 8726734
    Abstract: In one aspect the invention relates to a shear wave generator. The shear wave generator includes a first piezoelectric element having a first polarity in electrical communication with a first electrode; a second piezoelectric element having a second polarity in electrical communication with a second electrode, wherein the second polarity is an inverse of the first polarity; a boundary layer disposed behind both the first piezoelectric element and the second piezoelectric element; and an excitation signal generator in electrical communication with the first electrode and the second electrode, wherein the first piezoelectric element vibrates in a first direction and the second piezoelectric element vibrates in a second direction in response to an excitation signal. In one embodiment, the piezoelectric elements are disposed within an ultrasound imaging probe.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 15, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 20, 2014
    Assignee: Sonowise, Inc.
    Inventor: Shengtz Lin
  • Patent number: 8695429
    Abstract: The embodiments contemplate methods and devices for communicating an acoustic emission via an array of transducers and wirelessly communicating data via a transceiver, where the transceiver may be in communication with the array of transducers. Embodiments also contemplate providing power for the acoustic emission via a power source and providing information regarding a temperature sensor to the transceiver. The wirelessly communicated data may include the information regarding the temperature sensor. Embodiments also contemplate processing the wirelessly communicated data at a relatively remote location with respect to both the power source and the temperature sensor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 16, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 15, 2014
    Assignee: Siemens Medical Solutions USA, Inc.
    Inventors: Joseph A. Urbano, Kevin S. Randall, Jodi Schwartz Klessel, Michael G. Cannon
  • Patent number: 8683865
    Abstract: A device is disclosed that, in an illustrative embodiment, includes an input line, a main gain component, a first local gain component, and a second local gain component. The main gain component, the first local gain component, and the second local gain component each have a communicative connection with the input line. The main gain component is configured for applying a main gain to an ultrasonic wave signal received via the input line, thereby providing a main gain signal. The first local gain component is configured for applying a first local gain to a portion of the ultrasonic wave signal within a first signal gate, and thereby providing a first local gain signal. The second local gain component is configured for applying a second local gain to a portion of the ultrasonic wave signal within a second signal gate, and thereby providing a second local gain signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 26, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 1, 2014
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Norbert Ewald Steinhoff, Alexander Franz Freund, Markus Manfred Stahlberg
  • Patent number: 8656782
    Abstract: A method for the non-destructive material testing of a test object at least solid in some regions by subjecting the test object to ultrasonic waves and capturing the ultrasonic waves reflected within the test object. The method includes the steps, computer-supported dividing of the test object into a prescribed number of volume elements, subjecting the test object to ultrasound on a plurality of surface elements while probing the surface or at least one surface segment of the test object, capturing the sound waves reflected at the volume element while probing the plurality of surface elements on the surface or at least the surface segment of the test object, and in-phase addition of the sound waves reflected at the same volume elements and captured at various surface elements of the surface of the test object. Angle-dependent amplitude distribution is used in the sound field of the test head.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 4, 2008
    Date of Patent: February 25, 2014
    Assignee: Siemens Aktiengesellschaft
    Inventors: Rainer Boehm, Matthias Goldammer, Werner Heinrich
  • Patent number: 8627722
    Abstract: Disclosed is a welding inspection method which does not require the inspector to be highly skilled, does not require waiting for the spot welded part to cool off, and with which the probe is not consumed or damaged. A probe temporarily mounted close to the welded part on the surface of a metal plate emits ultrasonic waves from an oblique direction with respect to the boundary surfaces between a plurality of metal plates. At this time, the probe is temporarily mounted at the position where the incident ultrasonic waves pass through the welded part at the boundary between the plurality of metal plates in an oblique direction with respect to the boundary surface. Also, a display processing means displays the intensity of the refrected ultrasonic waves. Alternatively, the display processing means displays the details of the detection result estimated based on the intensity of the reflected ultrasonic waves.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 19, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 14, 2014
    Assignee: Hino Motors, Ltd.
    Inventor: Hiroshi Fukuda
  • Patent number: 8590381
    Abstract: Equipment of the invention provides ultrasonic flaw detection equipment using a volume focusing flaw detection method, the ultrasonic flaw detection equipment described below. That is, this equipment performs internal flaw detection of a material being tested, the material having a virtually circular cross-sectional shape, and transducers 1 . . . 1 are arranged in an arc along a circle exhibited by the material being tested. Array probes 10 . . . 10 are disposed so as to surround the material being tested. An exciting unit enables flaw detection of the material being tested to be performed by vertical and oblique flaw detection methods.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 17, 2009
    Date of Patent: November 26, 2013
    Assignee: Krautkramer Japan, Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Junichi Murai, Dominique Braconnier
  • Patent number: 8584526
    Abstract: Equipment of the invention uses a volume focusing flaw detection method. In a sectional view of a material m being tested, a plurality of transducers 1 . . . 1 of one of array probes 10 are arranged along one side of a rectangular shape of the material being tested, and a plurality of transducers 1 . . . 1 of the other of the array probes 10 are arranged along one of sides adjacent to the one side.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 16, 2008
    Date of Patent: November 19, 2013
    Assignee: Krautkramer Japan Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Junichi Murai, Dominique Braconnier
  • Patent number: 8577629
    Abstract: A method and system related to phased array ultrasonic systems identifies faults in individual element on a regular basis. The method and system are based on a simple approach of calculating energy levels in response signals from each individual element and then identifying any discontinuities or unexpected drops in energy levels sensed during a typical phased array operation, by comparing responses for individual transducer elements to the group response.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 25, 2009
    Date of Patent: November 5, 2013
    Assignee: Olympus NDT
    Inventors: Christian Simard, Michael Drummy
  • Patent number: 8525831
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for three-dimensional visualization and analysis for automatic non-destructive examination of a solid Rotor using ultrasonic phased array is disclosed. Data is acquired by scanning a solid rotor with a phased array ultrasound transducer producing a plurality of two dimensional ultrasound scans. Each of a plurality of sample points of a plurality of two dimensional ultrasound scans are associated with a corresponding 3D image point of a regular grid. A kernel function for each of the plurality of sample points defining a size and shape of a kernel located at the corresponding image point is determined. A weight is assigned to each kernel which, in one embodiment, is based on the sample point value. A value for each image point of the regular 3D grid is determined based on kernels overlapping each image point. A three-dimensional volume representing the solid rotor is then visualized.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 5, 2010
    Date of Patent: September 3, 2013
    Assignees: Siemens Corporation, Siemens Energy, Inc.
    Inventors: Jingdan Zhang, Moritz Michael Knorr, Shaohua Kevin Zhou, Waheed A. Abbasi, Michael F. Fair, Larry C. Himes, Michael J. Metala, El Mahjoub Rasselkorde
  • Patent number: 8506484
    Abstract: An ultrasonic imaging device which narrows the width of annular areas to be established, without increasing the number of channels. The controller establishes the annular areas 421 to 42p the number of which is larger than the number of signal lines, along line intersections between wave surfaces 51 to 54 of reflective waves and a multi-dimensional surface of the probe 1. The controller selects multiple annular areas (0, 0), (0, 1), and (0, 2) with focal depths differing, for example, by an integral multiple of the ultrasonic wavelength ?, out of the multiple annular areas being established, and connects the multiple transducer elements positioned within the selected multiple annular areas with an identical signal line. Accordingly, the received signals from the selected multiple annular areas arrive at multiple time points shifted by the time corresponding to the wavelength, and the signals do not cancel one another out.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 16, 2008
    Date of Patent: August 13, 2013
    Assignee: Hitachi Medical Corporation
    Inventors: Mariko Yamamoto, Kunio Hashiba, Takashi Azuma
  • Patent number: 8435181
    Abstract: Systems and methods are described for acquiring, processing, and presenting boundaries of a cavity-tissue interface within a region-of-interest in an ultrasound image based upon the strength of signals of ultrasound echoes returning from structures within the region-of-interest. The segmentation of boundaries of cavity shapes occupying the region-of-interest utilizes cost function analysis of pixel sets occupying the cavity-tissue interface. The segmented shapes are further image processed to determine areas and volumes of the organ or structure containing the cavity within the region-of-interest.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 7, 2013
    Assignee: Verathon Inc.
    Inventors: Fuxing Yang, Stephen Dudycha, Gerald McMorrow
  • Patent number: 8429974
    Abstract: Methods and systems for detecting features in thin-wall structures are provided. A plurality of ultrasonic waves are generated within a thin-wall structure. At least one echo from the plurality of ultrasonic waves within the thin-wall structure is detected. The at least one echo is processed to determine a position of at least one feature in the thin-wall structure based on Embedded Ultrasonic Structure Radar (EUSR) beamforming performed in the frequency domain.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 24, 2010
    Date of Patent: April 30, 2013
    Assignee: Honeywell International Inc.
    Inventors: Radek Hedl, Girija Parthasarathy
  • Patent number: 8387462
    Abstract: Provided are an ultrasonic testing method and an ultrasonic testing apparatus capable of accurately detecting flaws present in a weld zone of a test object, such as a welded pipe, regardless of the position of the flaws. An ultrasonic testing apparatus 100 includes an ultrasonic probe 1 which is provided with n (n?2) transducers 11 arranged along a direction orthogonal to the weld line of a weld zone P1 of a test object P and is arranged so as to face the weld zone, and transmission/reception control means 2 which selects m (n>m?1) transducers from the n transducers, causes the selected transducers to transmit and receive ultrasonic waves to and from the weld zone, and switches the selected transducers one after another.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 18, 2009
    Date of Patent: March 5, 2013
    Assignee: Sumitomo Metal Industries, Ltd.
    Inventors: Masaki Yamano, Hiroyuki Okubo, Takumi Horikiri
  • Patent number: 8365600
    Abstract: The invention is a method using ultrasound for non-destructive examination of a test body, whereby ultrasonic waves are coupled into the test body with one ultrasonic transducer or a multiplicity of ultrasonic transducers and the ultrasonic waves reflected inside the test body are received by a multiplicity of ultrasonic transducers and converted into ultrasonic signals. The ultrasonic signals detected in the single measurement periods are individually stored and are accessible for off-line evaluation after termination of the measurements. Application of corresponding reconstruction algorithms permits subsequent synthetization of any desired ultrasonic coupling-in angles and focussing into the volume region of the test body from the stored ultrasonic signals without requiring any additional ultrasonic measurements.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 9, 2005
    Date of Patent: February 5, 2013
    Assignee: Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Angewandten Forschung e.V.
    Inventors: Michael Kröning, Dieter Hentschel, Ludwig von Bernus, Andrey Bulavinov, Krishna Reddy
  • Patent number: 8266966
    Abstract: An exploration operation, in which the transmission/reception position, at which ultrasonic waves are transmitted and received, is changed by a specified pitch distance, is performed for each of a plurality of incident angles. A nonlinear image in which echo signals acquired from harmonic waves of reflected waves are presented is generated for each incident angle. Each nonlinear image is converted into a frame conversion image in accordance with the cross-sectional shape of an exploration-target area. A signal intensity threshold for removing echo signals resulting from an orientation defect is determined in advance. Frame conversion images formed by only echo signals 41a whose signal intensity is the signal intensity threshold or more are overlapped to generate a nonlinear exploration image 35. Exploration of a welded portion 23 stably provides a nonlinear exploration image 35 in which the shape of an interface 25 of the welded portion 23 is shown accurately and clearly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 18, 2010
    Date of Patent: September 18, 2012
    Assignee: Central Motor Wheel Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Kazuyoshi Ichigo, Koichiro Kawashima
  • Patent number: 8210042
    Abstract: A spiral wound module assembly comprising: a permeate collection tube, at least one membrane envelope wound about the permeate collection tube, an outer module housing, and at least one acoustic transducer located adjacent to the permeate collection tube. Several embodiments are disclosed including a stand-alone probe adapted for insertion into the permeate collection tube. In several other embodiments, one or more transducers are secured to the inner surface of the permeate collection tube.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 22, 2007
    Date of Patent: July 3, 2012
    Assignee: Dow Global Technologies LLC
    Inventors: William E. Mickols, Michael S. Koreltz, David J. Moll, Donald B. Streeter
  • Patent number: 8176787
    Abstract: According to embodiments of the present technique, a system and a method for addressing transducers in a two-dimensional transducer array is disclosed. According to one aspect of the present technique, the transducers are arranged in rows and columns, and the columns are coupled to a shared transmit and receive circuitry while the rows are coupled to a row selection circuitry. In another embodiment, each transducer is coupled to a separate, dedicated transmit circuitry and the columns are coupled to a shared receive circuitry.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 17, 2008
    Date of Patent: May 15, 2012
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Bruno Hans Haider, Robert Stephen Lewandowski, Robert Gideon Wodnicki
  • Patent number: 8172755
    Abstract: A beamforming apparatus is provided for improving beamforming accuracy by employing fractional delay filters in an interpolation process and reducing hardware complexity by using post-filtering technique. The beamforming apparatus of the present invention includes a post-filtering means implemented with fractional delay filters that combines block data, on the respective channels, supposed to be fractionally delayed and obtains a delay value of fractional part from the combined data. The post-filtering means collects the block data of the channels assigned identical coefficients and performs a filtering process simultaneously.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 6, 2007
    Date of Patent: May 8, 2012
    Assignee: Industry-University Cooperation Foundation Sogang University
    Inventors: Tai-Kyong Song, Jeong Cho, Jae-Hee Song
  • Patent number: 8166822
    Abstract: The embodiments contemplate methods and devices for communicating an acoustic emission via an array of transducers and wirelessly communicating data via a transceiver. The transceiver may be in communication with the array of transducers. The embodiments also contemplate providing power for the acoustic emission via a power source and processing the data at a relatively remote location with respect to the power source. In addition, the embodiments contemplate providing an indication at a relatively remote location with respect to the power source. The indication may provide, at least in part, numerical information regarding the acoustic emission.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 16, 2011
    Date of Patent: May 1, 2012
    Assignee: Penrith Corporation
    Inventors: Joseph A. Urbano, Kevin S. Randall, Jodi Schwartz Klessel, Michael G. Cannon
  • Patent number: 8161817
    Abstract: An ultrasonic diagnostic imaging system has a two dimensional array arranged in multiple patches of multiple transducer elements. Each patch of transducer elements is coupled to a group of microbeamformer delay lines having outputs coupled to a channel of a system beamformer, which beamforms the partially summed beams of each patch into a final beamformed signal. The outputs from multiple patches which are not simultaneously used in the active receive aperture are coupled to a common beamformer channel, enabling the number of patches of the array to exceed the number of channels of the system beamformer without the use of multiplexers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 20, 2007
    Date of Patent: April 24, 2012
    Assignee: Koninklijke Philips Electronics N.V
    Inventors: Andrew Robinson, Steven Freeman, Bernard Savord
  • Patent number: 8096951
    Abstract: An ultrasound system comprises a probe including a two-dimensional (2D) array of transducer elements that form an aperture having a plurality of receive elements that are configured to receive ultrasound signals. The transducer elements form at least one transmit sub-aperture that is configured to be interconnected with a fixed group of the transducer elements within the aperture. Transmitters generate electrical transmit signals, and at least one transmit sub-aperture processor (tx SAP) maps the transducer elements within the fixed group of the transducer elements to the transmitters in a transmit configuration based on a beam steering direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 28, 2007
    Date of Patent: January 17, 2012
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Kjell Kristoffersen, Bruno Hans Haider, Thomas Halvorsroed, Steinar Bjaerum
  • Patent number: 8091425
    Abstract: An ultrasonic testing method relates to a threaded joint of pipes including a pin having an external thread part, a metal seal part, and a shoulder part on an outer peripheral surface, and a box having an internal thread part, a metal seal part, and a shoulder part with the box and pin being fastened together using a lubricant. The method includes transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from a plurality of locations along an axial direction of the threaded joint in at least one of the internal thread part, the metal seal part, and the shoulder part of the box; detecting echo intensities and reception times of echoes for the plurality of locations; and detecting an abnormal portion in the threaded joint based on a longitudinal axial directional distribution of the echo intensities and longitudinal axial directional distribution of reception times of the echoes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 2007
    Date of Patent: January 10, 2012
    Assignees: Sumitomo Metal Industries, Ltd., Vallourec Mannesmann Oil & Gas France
    Inventors: Ikuji Hoshino, Masaki Yamano, Shigeo Nagasaku