Photoacoustic Imaging System


Photoacoustic imaging is a biomedical imaging modality based on the photoacoustic effect. In photoacoustic imaging, non-ionizing laser pulses are delivered into biological tissues. Some of the delivered energy will be absorbed and converted into heat, leading to transient thermoelastic expansion and thus wideband (i.e. MHz) ultrasonic emission. The generated ultrasonic waves are detected by ultrasonic transducers and then analyzed to produce images.

Instrument name

Photoacoustic Imaging System

Model number



VisualSonics INC


1Optical contrast for blood and molecular imaging.

2High-resolution at depth.

3Real-time Non-invasive.

4Anatomical, functional and molecular data.

Applications and Uses

Photoacoustic imaging is a new in vivo hybrid imaging modality that 

combines the sensitivity and contrast of optical imaging with the depth

and resolution of ultrasound. When pulsed laser light illuminates 

tissue, the optical absorbers there (such as hemoglobin) undergo

thermoelastic expansion, generating an acoustic pressure wave

which is detected with an ultrasound transducer.

The Vevo LAZR system incorporates photoacoustic imaging into

high-resolution ultrasound. The ultrasound imaging provides a

high-resolution frame-of-reference for identifying anatomy, while

the photoacoustic imaging enables functional measurements such

as oxygen saturation, total hemoglobin and the microdistribution

of biomarkers.


Xiaofang Tan

Contact number



Editor: Xiaofang Tan


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