Joel Weng Yu Tan (EngSci 1T5)

This summer I had the opportunity to work with a group of talented researchers at the Centre for Advanced Diffusion-Wave Technologies (CADIFT) in the Mechanical Engineering Department here at the University of Toronto. There were 4 main projects that I worked on throughout the summer. The first project involved an investigation into comparing the different properties (such as penetration depth, resolution and sensitivity) of ultrasound, micro-CT, and a technique called photoacoustics on the imaging of a bovine bone sample. The second project that I worked on involved identifying suitable Golay codes to increase the signal-to-noise(SNR) ratio of ultrasound chirps. The third project that I worked on involved studying the relationship between the intertrabecular distance (the distance between bone layers in a cancellous bone tissue) and the ultrasound backscattering resonance peaks. The fourth project that I worked on involved studying the penetration depth of ultrasound through a bovine cancellous bone using the same ultrasound modelling program (Wave3000).
Through this summer research experience, I have gained extensive experience in using the program Matlab. For my first project, I had to use Matlab to manipulate a 3-D image of the bone, in order to generate images as required to compare with the ultrasound and photoacoustic images. The manipulations that I did involved altering the resolution of the image, changing the viewing angles and altering the contrast of the image, among other things. In identifying the Golay codes, I used Matlab in order to calculate the most efficient Golay code (with regards to length and combinations of 1s,0s and -1s). However, I only ran computations up to 13-bit Golay codes due to it being very computationally expensive to go higher than 13-bits. In addition, I also used Matlab in order to process the data obtained from the simulations carried out in Wave3000 as well as to process the micro-CT images to be suitable for use in Wave3000.
I have also learnt how to use Wave3000, which is a software that does ultrasound propagation modelling. I learnt how to use the software to mimic the actual experimental set-up and allow me to see the ultrasound propagation step-by-step as it occurs.
Being in this program has allowed me to build up my network, as I have had the opportunity to work with researchers from various labs at the University of Toronto. Furthermore, I had the opportunity to attend the Second Canadian Conference and Workshop on Photoacoustics (PA) and Photothermics (PT) of Biosystems 2013 which allowed me to see the forefront of research in this field in Canada. Through this program, I have been exposed to how research is conducted in a world-class research lab in one of the best universities in the world. My heartfelt thanks to the Division of Engineering Science for giving me this opportunity!