Skip to Main Content
Spatially modulated ultrasound radiation force (SMURF) imaging is an elastographic technique that involves generating a radiation force beam with a lateral intensity variation of a defined spatial frequency. This results in a shear wave of known wavelength. By using the displacements induced by the shear wave and standard Doppler or speckle-tracking methods, the shear wave frequency, and thus material shear modulus, is estimated. In addition to generating a pushing beam pattern with a specified lateral intensity variation, it is generally desirable to induce larger displacements so that the displacement data signal-to-noise ratio is higher. We provide an analysis of two beam forming methods for generating SMURF in an elastic material: the focal Fraunhofer and intersecting plane wave methods. Both techniques generate beams with a defined spatial frequency. However, as a result of the trade-offs associated with each technique, the peak acoustic intensity outputs in the region of interest differs for the same combinations of parameters (e.g., the focal depth, the width of the area of interest, and ultrasonic attenuation coefficient). Assuming limited transducer drive voltage, we provide a decision plot to determine which of the two techniques yields the greater pushing force for a specific configuration.