Acousto-electric tomography

Hao Zhang, Lihong V. Wang*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

70 Scopus citations


Although the electric impedance of biological tissues is highly sensitive to their physiological and pathological status, pure electrical impedance tomography (EIT) has very poor spatial resolution. We invented acousto-electric tomography (AET) to image the electric impedance properties of biological tissues with high spatial resolution. AET is based on acousto-electric modulation, which is the localized variation in conductivity produced by a focused ultrasonic wave. It combines the contrast advantage of EIT and the resolution advantage of ultrasound imaging. The spatial resolution of AET is primarily defined by the size of the ultrasonic focal spot. Therefore, the resolution is much better than that of EIT, and it is scalable with the acoustic parameters. The contrast of AET is determined by the combination of three factors: the electric impedance, the media dependent modulation coefficient, and the acoustic properties. Unlike EIT, AET forms images directly without resorting to inverse algorithms. And unlike traditional ultrasonography, AET is free of speckles.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number20
Pages (from-to)145-149
Number of pages5
JournalProgress in Biomedical Optics and Imaging - Proceedings of SPIE
Issue number9
StatePublished - 2004
EventPhotons Plus Ultrasound: Imaging and Sensing - San Jose, CA, United States
Duration: Jan 25 2004Jan 26 2004


  • Acousto-electric modulation
  • Electric impedance
  • Tomography
  • Ultrasound

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Biomaterials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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