Smart Phone Ultrasound
|Photo: University of BC Lead Researcher Carlos Gerardo with new the transducer|
Potential Use for 24/7 Self-Monitoring by Smart Phone
Engineers at the University of British Columbia have developed a new ultrasound transducer or probe. It could lower the cost of an ultrasound scan to $100. This is patent-pending breakthrough tech. It's portable, wearable and can be powered by your smart phone. It's no bigger than a band-aid. The researchers say the potential is endless and could provide 24/7 monitoring of your arteries and veins to warn of the danger of heart attack or stroke.
How Did They Do It?
To simplify, they replaced piezoelectric crystals used to create images and deliver sonograms in conventional scanners with tiny vibrating drums of polymer resin. The cost saving is dramatic and the image quality is as good or better than conventional systems according to published reports. The UBC transducer needs only 10 volts to operate and can be powered by a smart phone.
Clinical tests need to be done. But there's another fascinating aspect to this tech. Researchers say it has the potential to be further miniaturized and built into flexible material that could wrap around the body for easier scanning and more detailed images, including 24/7 monitoring of arteries and veins.