GPU-based real-time small displacement estimation with ultrasound

S. Rosenzweig, M. Palmeri, K. Nightingale
Dept. of Biomed. Eng., Duke Univ., Durham, NC, USA
IEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics and Frequency Control, 2011, Volume: 58, Issue:2, p.399-405


   title={GPU-based real-time small displacement estimation with ultrasound},

   author={Rosenzweig, S. and Palmeri, M. and Nightingale, K.},

   journal={Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics and Frequency Control, IEEE Transactions on},








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General purpose computing on graphics processing units (GPUs) has been previously shown to speed up computationally intensive data processing and image reconstruction algorithms for computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance (MR), and ultrasound images. Although some algorithms in ultrasound have been converted to GPU processing, many investigative ultrasound research systems still use serial processing on a single CPU. One such ultrasound modality is acoustic radiation force impulse (ARFI) imaging, which investigates the mechanical properties of soft tissue. Traditionally, the raw data are processed offline to estimate the displacement of the tissue after the application of radiation force. It is highly advantageous to process the data in real-time to assess their quality and make modifications during a study. In this paper, we present algorithms for efficient GPU parallel processing of two widely used tools in ultrasound: cubic spline interpolation and Loupas’ two-dimensional autocorrelator for displacement estimation. It is shown that a commercially available graphics card can be used for these computations, achieving speed increases up to 40x compared with single CPU processing. Thus, we conclude that the GPU-based data processing approach facilitates real-time (i.e., <1 second) display of ARFI data and is a promising approach for ultrasonic research systems.
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