Author's School

School of Engineering & Applied Science

Author's Department/Program

Biomedical Engineering


English (en)

Date of Award

Winter 1-1-2012

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Chair and Committee

Mark A Anastasio


Photoacoustic computed tomography: PACT), also known as optoacoustic tomography, is a rapidly emerging imaging modality that holds great promise for a wide range of biomedical imaging applications. Much effort has been devoted to the investigation of imaging physics and the optimization of experimental designs. Meanwhile, a variety of image reconstruction algorithms have been developed for the purpose of computed tomography. Most of these algorithms assume full knowledge of the acoustic pressure function on a measurement surface that either encloses the object or extends to infinity, which poses many difficulties for practical applications. To overcome these limitations, iterative image reconstruction algorithms have been actively investigated. However, little work has been conducted on imaging models that incorporate the characteristics of data acquisition systems. Moreover, when applying to experimental data, most studies simplify the inherent three-dimensional wave propagation as two-dimensional imaging models by introducing heuristic assumptions on the transducer responses and/or the object structures. One important reason is because three-dimensional image reconstruction is computationally burdensome. The inaccurate imaging models severely limit the performance of iterative image reconstruction algorithms in practice. In the dissertation, we propose a framework to construct imaging models that incorporate the characteristics of ultrasonic transducers. Based on the imaging models, we systematically investigate various iterative image reconstruction algorithms, including advanced algorithms that employ total variation-norm regularization. In order to accelerate three-dimensional image reconstruction, we develop parallel implementations on graphic processing units. In addition, we derive a fast Fourier-transform based analytical image reconstruction formula. By use of iterative image reconstruction algorithms based on the proposed imaging models, PACT imaging scanners can have a compact size while maintaining high spatial resolution. The research demonstrates, for the first time, the feasibility and advantages of iterative image reconstruction algorithms in three-dimensional PACT.


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