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Two-dimensional ultrasound (US) is widely used in minimally invasive cardiac procedures due to its convenience of use and noninvasive nature. However, the low quality of US images often limits their utility as a means for guiding procedures, since it is often difficult to relate the images to their anatomical context. To improve the interpretability of the US images while maintaining US as a flexible anatomical and functional real-time imaging modality, we describe a multimodality image navigation system that integrates 2D US images with their 3D context by registering them to high quality preoperative models based on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or computed tomography (CT) images. The mapping from such a model to the patient is completed using spatial and temporal registrations. Spatial registration is performed by a two-step rapid registration method that first approximately aligns the two images as a starting point to an automatic registration procedure. Temporal alignment is performed with the aid of electrocardiograph (ECG) signals and a latency compensation method. Registration accuracy is measured by calculating the TRE. Results show that the error between the US and preoperative images of a beating heart phantom is 1.7plusmn0.4 mm, with a similar performance being observed in in vivo animal experiments.