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A computer-controlled adaptive phased array radiofrequency hyperthermia system for improved therapeutic tumor heating is experimentally investigated. Adaptive array feedback techniques are used to modify the electric-field in hyperthermia experiments with a homogeneous saline phantom target. A hyperthermia phased-array antenna system has been modified to implement adaptive nulling and adaptive focusing algorithms. The hyperthermia system is a ring phased-array antenna applicator with four independently controlled RF transmitter channels operating at a CW frequency of 100 MHz. The hyperthermia phased array is made adaptive by software modifications which invoke a gradient-search feedback algorithm that controls the amplitude and phase of each transmitter channel. The gradient-search algorithm implements the method of steepest descent for adaptive nulling (power minimization) and the method of steepest ascent for adaptive focusing (power maximization). The feedback signals are measured by electric-field short-dipole probe antennas. The measured data indicate that with an adaptive hyperthermia array it may be possible to maximize the applied electric field at a tumor position in a complex scattering target body and simultaneously minimize or reduce the electric field at target positions where undesired high-temperature regions (hot spots) occur.
Date of Publication: March 1996