Fraunhofer Institute for Biomedical Engineering
Ultrasound System Design & Sensor Design
Medical diagnostics and non-destructive testing are the main fields of commercial ultrasonic systems. Due to an increasing need of imaging quality sensors and electronics become more and more complex.
Fraunhofer IBMT has developed computer programs to simulate the acoustic characteristics of ultrasonic transducers with respect to their shape, electro-acoustical performance and their driving electronics. Complete ultrasonic systems can be examined with the computer. These systems can range from single element transducers with standard transmit/receive electronics to 2D phased array systems for 3D ultrasound imaging in medicine.
The basis of all ultrasonic sensor systems is an electro- mechanical transducer. For high frequency medical applications and most of the non-destructive sensors the active element is made of piezoelectric ceramics. Since acoustic performance, frequency, geometric shape and material properties are strongly correlated computer aided simulations are necessary for development.
Fraunhofer IBMT has developed several specialized codes and arranged them around the commercial FEM code ANSYS® to build a powerful sensor design tool. Due to the so called multi- physics approach of ANSYS® different sensor concepts like electromagnetic systems can be integrated easily.
Electromagnetic System Design
Magnetic Resonance Imaging and Spectroscopy have proven to be valuable non-invasive and non-destructive methods in medicine, biology, chemistry and materials science. The necessary spatial and temporal distribution of magnetic fields are generated by gradient and radiofrequency coils.
Microelectromechanical Devices (MEMS) are integrated microdevices combining electrical and mechanical components. Sensors, actors and electronics can be integrated on a chip. High integration of systems is only reached by new interconnection and manufacturing techniques. The modular computer program CFD-ACE+® can simulate manufacturing and performance of different MEMS incorporating fluidic microchannel, electromagnetic, semiconductor material processing and thermal simulations.