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A ring array provides a very suitable geometry for forward-looking volumetric intracardiac and intravascular ultrasound imaging. We fabricated an annular 64-element capacitive micromachined ultrasonic transducer (CMUT) array featuring a 10-MHz operating frequency and a 1.27-mm outer radius. A custom software suite was developed to run on a PCbased imaging system for real-time imaging using this device. This paper presents simulated and experimental imaging results for the described CMUT ring array. Three different imaging methods-flash, classic phased array (CPA), and synthetic phased array (SPA)-were used in the study. For SPA imaging, two techniques to improve the image quality-Hadamard coding and aperture weighting-were also applied. The results show that SPA with Hadamard coding and aperture weighting is a good option for ring-array imaging. Compared with CPA, it achieves better image resolution and comparable signal-tonoise ratio at a much faster image acquisition rate. Using this method, a fast frame rate of up to 463 volumes per second is achievable if limited only by the ultrasound time of flight; with the described system we reconstructed three cross-sectional images in real-time at 10 frames per second, which was limited by the computation time in synthetic beamforming.