Ultrasound imaging for quantitative measurement of immersed plastic waste particles

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Ultrasound imaging techniques are proposed for measuring the shape and thickness of immersed waste particles (10-20 mm size) using a linear sensor array from a fixed position. For these purposes both the front and back surface of a particle needs to be reconstructed. Raw ultrasound pulse-echo and plane wave datasets and different imaging techniques were investigated in a case study using a single, generic test object. Phase shift migration proved the most efficient technique with a good performance, provided the front surface of the particle is plane. In other cases the non-stationary phase shift extrapolator may be applied to generalize this migration technique to particles with a non-plane front surface. Alternatively, SAFT and wave equation redatuming were coupled to obtain an acceptable reconstruction independent of the shape of the front surface. The case study shows that ultrasound imaging has potential as a quantitative assessment tool in immersion solid waste processing.