Forward-looking intracardiac ultrasound imaging using a 1-D CMUT array integrated with custom front-end electronics

Amin Nikoozadeh, Ira O. Wygant, Der Song Lin, Ömer Oralkan, A. Sanli Ergun, Douglas N. Stephens, Kai E. Thomenius, Aaron M. Dentinger, Douglas Wildes, Gina Akopyan, Kalyanam Shivkumar, Aman Mahajan, David J. Sahn, Butrus T. Khuri-Yakub

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


Minimally invasive catheter-based electrophysiological (EP) interventions are becoming a standard procedure in diagnosis and treatment of cardiac arrhythmias. As a result of technological advances that enable small feature sizes and a high level of integration, nonfluoroscopic intracardiac echocardiography (ICE) imaging catheters are attracting increasing attention. ICE catheters improve EP procedural guidance while reducing the undesirable use of fluoroscopy, which is currently the common catheter guidance method. Phased-array ICE catheters have been in use for several years now, although only for side-looking imaging. We are developing a forwardlooking ICE catheter for improved visualization. In this effort, we fabricate a 24-element, fine-pitch 1-D array of capacitive micromachined ultrasonic transducers (CMUT), with a total footprint of 1.73 mm × 1.27 mm. We also design a custom integrated circuit (IC) composed of 24 identical blocks of transmit/receive circuitry, measuring 2.1 mm × 2.1 mm. The transmit circuitry is capable of delivering 25-V unipolar pulses, and the receive circuitry includes a transimpedance preamplifier followed by an output buffer. The CMUT array and the custom IC are designed to be mounted at the tip of a 10-Fr catheter for high-frame-rate forward-looking intracardiac imaging. Through-wafer vias incorporated in the CMUT array provide access to individual array elements from the back side of the array. We successfully flip-chip bond a CMUT array to the custom IC with 100% yield. We coat the device with a layer of polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) to electrically isolate the device for imaging in water and tissue. The pulse-echo in water from a total plane reflector has a center frequency of 9.2 MHz with a 96% fractional bandwidth. Finally, we demonstrate the imaging capability of the integrated device on commercial phantoms and on a beating ex vivo rabbit heart (Langendorff model) using a commercial ultrasound imaging system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2651-2660
Number of pages10
JournalIEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2008
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Instrumentation
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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