Advanced ultrasound-on-chip opens new applications

October 13, 2020 // By Rich Pell
Next-gen ultrasound-on-chip tech advances point-of-care imaging
Ultrasound technology company Butterfly Network has announced its next-gen whole-body ultrasound product featuring its ultrasound-on-chip technology.

The new Butterfly iQ+ whole-body ultrasound device is offered as providing new capabilities, such as faster frame rates, Needle Viz needle visualization technology, a longer battery life, and industry-leading durability.

"Two years ago, Butterfly introduced the world's first handheld, single-probe, whole-body ultrasound system," says Laurent Faracci, Butterfly Network's Chief Executive Officer. "Since then, the device has been used by tens of thousands of medical professionals across the globe with significant clinical, economic and societal impact. We have collaborated with the Butterfly community of users to define our innovation path. The first result in that journey is the new Butterfly iQ+, a big step forward for point-of-care ultrasound, with our most advanced chip ever and a number of amazing innovations and improvements that our talented team and partners developed."

Butterfly iQ+ features an optimized manufacturing process in partnership with TSMC, the largest and most advanced dedicated IC foundry in the world. TSMC's MEMS (microelectromechanical systems) manufacturing technology enables the ultrasound transducer to seamlessly integrate with CMOS (complementary metal-oxide semiconductor) technology. In addition, TSMC possesses manufacturing capacity, says the company, that can scale to realize its vision of making an ultrasound device as ubiquitous as the stethoscope for the world's 40 million healthcare providers.

Butterfly's product has been shown to be a particularly useful tool during the global COVID-19 pandemic due to its lung imaging capabilities, portability and ease of cleaning, as infection control has become increasingly important. Butterfly iQ+, says the company, brings a suite of new capabilities that make it even easier to make fast decisions at the bedside.

"These new capabilities," says Dr. John Martin, Butterfly Network's Chief Medical Officer, "bring us one step closer to realizing the full potential of bedside point-of-care ultrasound as the stethoscope of the future—a true window into the body."

Key features include the following:

  • Faster, sharp imaging - With patented on-chip digital micro-beamforming enabling 15% faster frame rates and 60% faster pulse repetition

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