High accuracy ultrasound micro-distance measurements with pmuts under liquid operation

Iván Zamora, Eyglis Ledesma, Arantxa Uranga, Núria Barniol*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Ultrasonic systems driven by multi-frequency continuous waves (MFCW) have been used for range distance measurement, offering high accuracy in long and medium range distance estimation. However, the use of continuous waves in very short-distance measurements causes large errors due to multipath reflections. This paper presents a new strategy to estimate very short relative distances with high accuracy based on the use of multi-frequency pulsed waves (MFPW). The proposed strategy allows to avoid the multipath reflections that appear when continuous waves are used, and it improves the achieved accuracy compared to the original MFCW method. To validate it, an 80 µm square AlScN piezoelectric micromachined ultrasonic transducer (PMUT) was chosen as a transmitter while a hydrophone was utilized as a target and receiver, immersed in fluorinert (FC-70) as a propagation medium. Three independent and consecutive tone-burst signals were transmitted successively. The selected frequencies are f1 = 2.3962 MHz, f2 = 2.327 MHz and f3 = 2.1195 MHz, giving first and second-order resolutions of 6.88 and 0.79 µm/, respectively. Experimental results show a ±6.2 µm measured range error in a range of 3.5 mm, and therefore it represents a good candidate for ultrasound micro-profilometer applications under liquid operation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number13
Number of pages11
Issue number13
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2021


  • Immersed distance measurement
  • Multi-frequency continuous waves
  • Phase measurement
  • PMUT
  • Time-of-flight
  • Ultrasound


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