A Programmable RF Transmitter for Wideband Thermoacoustic Spectroscopic Imaging

This paper presents a compact RF-acoustics imaging system which adds RF spectroscopy capability for enhanced contrast and specificity in soft tissue imaging. A programmable, wideband, high power RF transmitter with 25.6 dBm across 1–3 GHz is designed in a 55-nm BiCMOS process enabling the system to operate across both conventional pulse mode as well as the SNR-enhancing coherent imaging mode. Measured reconstructed images at different RF excitation frequencies demonstrate the feasibility to distinguish materials based on the spectroscopic information, therefore opening the door to new spectroscopic feature sets in compact thermoacoustic imaging modalities.