To evaluate and improve the longitudinal and lateral resolution of an ultrasonic transducer in pulse-echo imaging, it is useful to visualize how the ultrasonic pulse travels in space. A method for measuring and dynamically displaying the traveling acoustic wave pulses is developed. A half-millimeter hydrophone was used to scan two-dimensional planes through the beams produced by three types of transducers: commercial PZT, air-backed PZT, and PZT ceramic/polymer composite. The signals were digitized and stored in two- and three-dimensional formats. The ANALYZE software package was used to produce movies of the traveling wave as well as the two- and three-dimensional depictions of the pulse at various points in space and time.
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