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Tissue sensing adaptive Radar for breast cancer detection-investigations of an improved skin-sensing method

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3 Author(s)
T. C. Williams ; Electr. & Comput. Eng., Calgary Univ., Alta., Canada ; E. C. Fear ; D. T. Westwick

Active microwave breast imaging is being researched as a supplement to current breast imaging modalities. Ultra-wideband radar approaches involve analyzing reflections from the breast to identify the presence of tumors. Skin sensing, which involves estimating the location and thickness of the skin, is a key step in this process, as the reflections from the skin dominate the signal. Current methods employing a rudimentary peak detection process estimate the location of the breast with acceptable accuracy. However, estimates of skin thickness in the range of 1.0-2.0 mm have unacceptable error. A method using deconvolution to obtain the impulse response of a scattering object is investigated to improve the performance of the skin-sensing algorithm. The new method employs a calibration step using a perfect electric conductor. Application to simulated data shows success in reducing the error percentage in both breast skin location and thickness estimates by more than half.

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Microwave Theory and Techniques  (Volume:54 ,  Issue: 4 )