Plane Wave – Vol. 2, Issue 4 – Advance Your Capabilities in NDE Research with Vantage and the University of Bristol’s BRAIN Software

Welcome to the fourth issue of Volume 2 of PLANE WAVE, Verasonics’ Newsletter through which we share information about new products and technologies, emerging applications, conferences, training opportunities, and collaborations with researchers in ultrasound and ultrasonic technologies.  We hope you find these newsletters informative and interesting, and welcome your suggestions for future topics.

New Products and Applications ▪ Technology Information ▪ Research ▪ Conferences and Training

Advance Your Capabilities in Phased Array Research for Non-Destructive Evaluation (NDE) with Vantage® Research Ultrasound and the University of Bristol’s BRAIN Software

As researchers in the materials science and NDE disciplines have begun employing phased array imaging using Full Matrix Capture techniques, they have been hampered by the lack of development tools. To address this limitation the scientists in the Ultrasonics and Non-Destructive Testing (NDT) group at the University of Bristol (UK) developed BRAIN (BRistol Array INspection), a software package for NDE analysis and inspection development.

BRAIN, provides highly sophisticated post-processing characterization and visualization tools in an easy to use package. The software package enables full-matrix and other advanced imaging techniques and analytical modules that are agnostic to the array technology. Working with Verasonics, Dr. Paul Wilcox and Dr. Anthony Croxford have now made the BRAIN software compatible with the Verasonics Vantage platform, combining the power of their software with the flexibility and speed of the Vantage system. The University of Bristol’s BRAIN software is available at no cost; contact Verasonics if you are interested in using the BRAIN software with the Verasonics Vantage Platform.

A phased array on a carbon fiber composite block setup.
See the two images below generated using BRAIN software.
The premier Vantage hardware provides measurable signals in highly attenuative environments.
Live ultrasonic FMC data captured in BRAIN.
Image of specimen applying advanced signal processing.

BRAIN key features:

  • Open architecture for defect characterization using data from phased arrays

  • Adaptability to surface geometries from 2D array imaging

  • 3D volumetric analysis from 2D imaging

  • Advanced characterization customizable for many materials

  • Includes a number of useful analytical modules

  • Extensible; users can easily program additional modules
  • Intuitive graphical user interface (GUI)
  • GPU-accelerated imaging (with correct hardware)
  • MATLAB version available
  • Enables full matrix, Hadamard acquisition and single planewave (common source method) techniques
  • No cost for users

“There is very little that we cannot do with it, from evaluation of anisotropic materials to characterization of various composites.” 
– Dr. Christopher Lane, user since 2014

PC Hardware and Software Requirements for BRAIN:

  • MATLAB license
  • Verasonics software release 3.4.2 (available soon)
  • Standard PC (All vantage supported and shipped PC’s are capable of supporting BRAIN)
  • For use of GPU acceleration, the MATLAB Parallel Computing Toolbox is required and an Nvidia GPU

BRAIN software, when paired with the Vantage research system, provides researchers with comprehensive data acquisition and analysis capabilities for materials science and NDE research. Vantage, the leading system for research ultrasound, provides the unparalleled flexibility and programmability that is required to enable research and development in a broad scope of application areas. The Vantage platform delivers proven quality, is easy to use, and is upgradable to grow with your research need. In addition, Verasonics provides comprehensive documentation and world-class customer support.

Vantage systems provide:

  • Advanced phased array technology with 32, 64, 128 or 256 channels

  • Open architecture for unparalleled flexibility and real-time access to raw RF data

  • Programmable transmit sequences and focal laws

  • Arbitrary waveform capability on each channel

  • Frequency ranges from 50 kHz to 50 MHz

  • 6.6 GB/s data transfer rate

  • Compatibility with University of Bristol’s BRAIN Software

  • TFM and FMC, plus guided wave, ultrafast imaging and tomography capabilities

  • Support for many transducers with a suite of Universal Transducer Adapters (UTAs)

  • MATLAB user interface with easy integration of real-time custom processing

In addition to BRAIN, Verasonics is pleased to announce that several other new products are now available for NDE research, including the new Vantage 32 LE and new UTA adapters. The Vantage 32 LE has 64 programmable transmit channels, and 32 receive channels, and will begin shipping later this summer. Although it is Verasonics’ most affordable product, it uses the same easy-to-program software as the other Vantage systems, and is upgradable to any Vantage configuration. The Vantage 32 LE is available in both standard frequency and low frequency configurations. The popular UTA (universal transducer adapter) technology has now been expanded with the addition of new adapters for both single element and phased array transducers. For more information about these and other products, please contact us.

Upcoming Vantage Training via Webinar:

Please join us for our September Vantage customer training session via live webinar.
14-17 September 2020, 9 am – 11 am PT
Please contact us to register.

Visit Us and Learn What’s New at these Upcoming Conferences:

IEEE International Ultrasonics Symposium
7-11 September 2020 – Virtual Event

WMIC Virtual Experience
7-9 October 2020 – Virtual Event

2020 VCS Virtual Annual Conference
15-17 October 2020 – Virtual Event

American Society for Nondestructive Testing Annual Conference
9-12 November 2020 – Virtual Event

7th International Symposium on Focused Ultrasound 
8-12 November 2020 – Virtual Event

Learn more about Verasonics and Vantage Research Ultrasound.
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2020-04-17T16:08:56-07:00 June 11th, 2018|Materials Science NDT/NDE, New Products, Verasonics Technology|