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New technique allows ultrasound to penetrate bone, metal

Researchers from North Carolina State University have developed a technique that allows ultrasound to penetrate bone or metal, using customized structures that offset the distortion usually caused by these so-called "aberrating layers." "We've designed complementary metamaterials that will make it easier for medical professionals to use ultrasound for diagnostic or therapeutic applications, such as monitoring blood flow in the brain or to treat brain tumors," says Tarry Chen Shen, a Ph.D. student at NC State and lead author of a paper on the work. "This has been difficult in the past because the skull distorts the ultrasound's acoustic field."

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