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The development and acoustical characterisation of a range of novel agar-based tissue mimicking material (TMMs) for use in clinically relevant, quality assurance (QA) and anthropomorphic breast phantoms are presented. The novel agar-based TMMs described in this study are based on a comprehensive, systematic variation of the ingredients in the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) TMM. A novel, solid fat-mimicking material was also developed and acoustically characterised. Acoustical characterisation was carried out using an in-house scanning acoustic macroscope at low (7.5 MHz) and high frequencies (20 MHz), using the pulse-echo insertion technique. The speeds of sound range from 1490 to 1570 m. s-1, attenuation coefficients range from 0.1 to 0.9 dB. cm‑1. MHz-1 and relative backscatter ranges from 0 to - 20 dB. It was determined that tissues can be mimicked in terms of independently controllable speeds of sound and attenuation coefficients. These properties make these novel TMMs suitable for use in clinically relevant QA and anthropomorphic phantoms, and would potentially be useful for other high frequency applications such as intra-vascular and small animal imaging.
Browne, J. E. (2011) Novel Tissue Mimicking Materials for High Frequency Breast Ultrasound Phantoms. Ultrasound in Med. & Biol. Jan. vol.37, no.1, pp. 122-35. doi:10.1016/j.ultrasmedbio.2010.10.005