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Oleg Sapozhnikov

Senior Principal Engineer






M.S. Physics, Moscow State University, 1985

Ph.D. Acoustics, Moscow State University, 1988


Characterizing Medical Ultrasound Sources and Fields

For every medical ultrasound transducer it's important to characterize the field it creates, whether for safety of imaging or efficacy of therapy. CIMU researchers measure a 2D acoustic pressure distribution in the beam emanating from the source transducer and then reconstruct mathematically the exact field on the surface of the transducer and in the entire 3D space.

11 Sep 2017

Mechanical Tissue Ablation with Focused Ultrasound

An experimental noninvasive surgery method uses nonlinear ultrasound pulses to liquefy tissue at remote target sites within a small focal region without damaging intervening tissues.

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23 Mar 2017

Boiling histotripsy utilizes sequences of millisecond-duration HIFU pulses with high-amplitude shocks that form at the focus by nonlinear propagation effects. Due to strong attenuation of the ultrasound energy at the shocks, these nonlinear waves rapidly heat tissue and generate millimeter-sized boiling bubbles at the focus within each pulse. Then the further interaction of subsequent shocks with the vapor cavity causes tissue disintegration into subcellular debris through the acoustic atomization mechanism.

The method was proposed at APL-UW in collaboration with Moscow State University (Russia) and now is being evaluated for various clinical applications. It has particular promise because of its important clinical advantages: the treatment of tissue volumes can be accelerated while sparing adjacent structures and not injuring intervening tissues; it generates precisely controlled mechanical lesions with sharp margins; the method can be implemented in existing clinical systems; and it can be used with real-time ultrasound imaging for targeting, guidance, and evaluation of outcomes. In addition, compared to thermal ablation, BH may lead to faster resorption of the liquefied lesion contents.

Burst Wave Lithotripsy: An Experimental Method to Fragment Kidney Stones

CIMU researchers are investigating a noninvasive method to fragment kidney stones using ultrasound pulses rather than shock waves. Consecutive acoustic cycles accumulate and concentrate energy within the stone. The technique can be 'tuned' to create small fragments, potentially improving the success rate of lithotripsy procedures.

20 Nov 2014


2000-present and while at APL-UW

Quantification of acoustic radiation forces on solid objects in fluid

Ghanem, M.A., A.D. Maxwell, O.A. Sapozhnikov, V.A. Khokhlova, and M.R. Bailey, "Quantification of acoustic radiation forces on solid objects in fluid," Phys. Rev. Appl., 12, doi:10.1103/PhysRevApplied.12.044076, 2019.

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1 Oct 2019

Theoretical models allow design of acoustic traps to manipulate objects with radiation force. A model of the acoustic radiation force by an arbitrary beam on a solid object is validated against measurement. The lateral force in water of different acoustic beams is measured and calculated for spheres of different diameters (2–6 wavelengths λ in water) and compositions. This is the first effort to validate a general model, to quantify the lateral force on a range of objects, and to electronically steer large or dense objects with a single-sided transducer. Vortex beams and two other beam shapes having a ring-shaped pressure field in the focal plane are synthesized in water by a 1.5-MHz, 256-element focused array. Spherical targets (glass, brass, ceramic, 2–6 mm dia.) are placed on an acoustically transparent plastic plate that is normal to the acoustic beam axis and rigidly attached to the array. Each sphere is trapped in the beam as the array with the attached plate is rotated until the sphere falls from the acoustic trap because of gravity. Calculated and measured maximum obtained angles agree on average to within 22%. The maximum lateral force occurs when the target diameter equals the beam width; however, objects up to 40% larger than the beam width are trapped. The lateral force is comparable to the gravitation force on spheres up to 90 mg (0.0009 N) at beam powers on the order of 10 W. As a step toward manipulating objects, the beams are used to trap and electronically steer the spheres along a two-dimensional path.

Simulation of nonlinear trans-skull focusing and formation of shocks in brain using a fully populated ultrasound array with aberration correction

Rosnitskiy, P.B., P.V. Uldashev, O.A. Sapozhnikov, L.R. Gavrilov, and V.A. Khokhlova, "Simulation of nonlinear trans-skull focusing and formation of shocks in brain using a fully populated ultrasound array with aberration correction," J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 146, doi:10.1121/1.5126685 , 2019.

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1 Sep 2019

Multi-element high-intensity focused ultrasound phased arrays in the shape of hemispheres are currently used in clinics for thermal lesioning in deep brain structures. Certain side effects of overheating non-targeted tissues and skull bones have been revealed. Here, an approach is developed to mitigate these effects. A specific design of a fully populated 256-element 1-MHz array shaped as a spherical segment (F–number, F# = 1) and filled by randomly distributed equal-area polygonal elements is proposed. Capability of the array to generate high-amplitude shock fronts at the focus is tested in simulations by combining three numerical algorithms for linear and nonlinear field modeling and aberration correction. The algorithms are based on the combination of the Rayleigh integral, a linear pseudo-spectral time domain Kelvin–Voigt model, and nonlinear Westervelt model to account for the effects of inhomogeneities, aberrations, reflections, absorption, nonlinearity, and shear waves in the skull. It is shown that the proposed array can generate nonlinear waveforms with shock amplitudes >60 MPa at the focus deep inside the brain without exceeding the existing technical limitation on the intensity of 40 W/cm2 at the array elements. Such shock amplitudes are sufficient for mechanical ablation of brain tissues using the boiling histotripsy approach and implementation of other shock-based therapies.

Dependence of inertial cavitation induced by high intensity focused ultrasound on transducer F-number and nonlinear waveform distortion

Khokhlova, T., P. Rosnitskiy, C. Hunter, A. Maxwell, W. Kreider, G. Ter Haar, M. Costa, O. Sapozhnikov, and V. Khokhlova, "Dependence of inertial cavitation induced by high intensity focused ultrasound on transducer F-number and nonlinear waveform distortion," J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 144, 1160, doi:10.1121/1.5052260, 2018.

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1 Sep 2018

Pulsed high intensity focused ultrasound was shown to enhance chemotherapeutic drug uptake in tumor tissue through inertial cavitation, which is commonly assumed to require peak rarefactional pressures to exceed a certain threshold. However, recent studies have indicated that inertial cavitation activity also correlates with the presence of shocks at the focus. The shock front amplitude and corresponding peak negative pressure (p–) in the focal waveform are primarily determined by the transducer F-number: less focused transducers produce shocks at lower p–. Here, the dependence of inertial cavitation activity on the transducer F-number was investigated in agarose gel by monitoring broadband noise emissions with a coaxial passive cavitation detector (PCD) during pulsed exposures (pulse duration 1 ms, pulse repetition frequency 1 Hz) with p– varying within 1–15 MPa. Three 1.5 MHz transducers with the same aperture, but different focal distances (F-numbers 0.77, 1.02, 1.52) were used. PCD signals were processed to extract cavitation probability, persistence, and mean noise level. At the same p–, all metrics indicated enhanced cavitation activity at higher F-numbers; specifically, cavitation probability reached 100% when shocks formed at the focus. These results provide further evidence supporting the excitation of inertial cavitation at reduced p– by waveforms with nonlinear distortion and shocks.

More Publications


Noninvasive Fragmentation of Urinary Tract Stones with Focused Ultrasound

Patent Number: 10,251,657

Adam Maxwell, Mike Bailey, Bryan Cunitz, Wayne Kreider, Oleg Sapozhnikov

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9 Apr 2019

Methods, computing devices, and a computer-readable medium are described herein related to fragmenting or comminuting an object in a subject using a burst wave lithotripsy (BWL) waveform. A computing device, such a computing device coupled to a transducer, may carry out functions for producing a BWL waveform. The computing device may determine a burst frequency for a number of bursts in the BWL waveform, where the number of bursts includes a number of cycles. Further, the computing device may determine a cycle frequency for the number of cycles. Yet further, the computing device may determine a pressure amplitude for the BWL waveform, where the pressure amplitude is less than or equal to 8 MPa. In addition, the computing device may determine a time period for producing the BWL waveform.

Determining a Presence of an Object

Patent Number: 10,136,835

Mike Bailey, Wei Lu, Oleg Sapozhnikov, Bryan Cunitz

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27 Nov 2018

Methods, computing devices, and computer-readable medium are described herein related to producing detection signals configured to induce an excited state of an object. A computing device may receive reflection signals, where the reflection signals correspond to at least one detection signals reflected from the object. Based on the received reflection signals, a presence of the object in the excited state may be determined. Further, an output device may provide an indication of the presence of the object in the excited state.

Design of a Transrectal Ultrasound Probe for Boiling Histotripsy Ablation of Prostate

Record of Invention Number: 48264

Tanya Khokhlova, Oleg Sapozhnikov, George Schade


6 Feb 2018

More Inventions

Acoustics Air-Sea Interaction & Remote Sensing Center for Environmental & Information Systems Center for Industrial & Medical Ultrasound Electronic & Photonic Systems Ocean Engineering Ocean Physics Polar Science Center