November 14, 2020 | Contributed By - Erdal Oruklu, Ultrasonics Newsletter Editor

The IEEE IUS 2020 Conference was held as a Virtual-Only Event between September 6-11, 2020. With the resurgence of COVID-19 within the State of Nevada, in particular Las Vegas, along with the city’s prohibiting large or even moderately-sized public gatherings, it made it an impossibility to hold the in-person event as originally planned.

The organizing committee led by General Co-Chairs Paul Reynolds and Scott Smith worked tirelessly to provide the best experience for authors and online participants. Consequently, IEEE IUS 2020 witnessed many firsts: A fully virtual technical program using the CONFlux platform; e-posters with rich content using the Kubify platform; on-demand viewable content which was still accessible after the conference was over;  transcripts for many talks; live and pre-recorded short courses with live Q&A; multiple workshops for career development; student pitch competition and networking sessions; e-posters competition, social mixer events such as Pub Quizzes, and Patron Webinars among other exciting events.


The conference was a success, and the IEEE IUS continued its growth with more than 1900 registrants, despite the Covid-19 pandemic and challenging circumstances. Short courses also had a record number of participants with 277 registrants.


Technical Program Highlights

Technical Program Committee (TPC) Co-Chairs Paul Dayton and Omer Oralkan collaborated with 180 TPC members and prepared an exciting program. IEEE IUS 2020 hosted 30 invited talks, 13 short courses and several special sessions. These spotlight sessions included: Advanced Imaging Technologies and Techniques; Integrated/Portable Systems; MEMS; Wearable Systems; Electronics and Ultrasound. Plenary speaker was David B. Tanner, University of Florida and his talk was titled: “Advanced LIGO: When black holes collide”.


More than 200 oral (pre-recorded) presentations were scheduled across five parallel tracks. IEEE CONFlux from Conference Catalysts was used as the primary portal and delivery mechanism for video content. 900 Poster presentations were published online. Authors had extensive options for video, audio and data to enrich their poster content and enhance author – audience engagement. Each poster presenter attended live Q&A sessions.


Conference proceedings will be available on IEEE Xplore.


Ultrasonics and UFFC Awards

The IEEE IUS 2020 Welcome Session on September 8th, 2020 finished with the presentation of the Ultrasonics Awards, announced by Jafar Saniie, and the UFFC Awards, announced by Jan Brown. 2020 Ultrasonics Awards recipients are Katherine Ferrara, Rayleigh award; Paul A. Dayton, Carl Hellmuth Hertz award; and Meaghan A. O’Reilly, Early Career Investigator award. 2020 UFFC Awards recipients are Takaaki Tsurumi, Achievement Award, and Dragan Damjanovic, Distinguished Service Award. Distinguished Lecturers are Pai-Chi Li, Clive Randall, Gaetano Mileti, and Matthew O’Donnell. Fei Li, Himanshu Shekhar, Joel Harley, Yun Jing, Nick Bottenus and Muyinatu Bell are Star Ambassador Lecturers.


Student Paper Competition

18 students competed for best paper in their technical groups.  Winners are:

Medical Ultrasonics:

Eno Hysi, Ryerson University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

“Photoacoustic Imaging of Organ Fibrosis”

Medical Ultrasonics:

Hanna Bendjador, ESPCI, PSL Research University, INSERM, CNRS, France

SVD Beamforming for Ultrafast Aberration Correction and Real-Time Speed-of-Sound Quantification”

Sensors, NDE & Industrial Applications:

An Huang, University of California-San Diego, USA

Enabling fast charging lithium ion batteries with surface acoustic wave devices”

Physical Acoustics:

Carlos Cueto, Imperial College London, UK

“Ultrasound full-Waveform Inversion with Accurate Transducer Characterisation”

Microacoustics-SAW, BAW, MEMS:

Liuqing Gao, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Illinois, USA

“A 14.5 GHz Lithium Niobate Acoustic Filter with Fractional Bandwidth of 2.93%”

Transducers & Transducer Materials:

Bohua Zhang, NC State University, Raleigh, North Carolina, USA

“Laser Sensor Guided Intravascular Catheter with Ring Type Stack Transducer for Sonothrombolysis”


UFFC ePoster Competition

The first ever UFFC ePoster Competition was held during the symposium. Awards emphasize the rich content and innovative use of multimedia in ePosters. Winners are:


Best Overall:

Carly Pellow, University of Toronto, Canada

“Real-Time Visualization and Acoustic Monitoring of Nanobubbles in Tumour-Affected Vasculature and their Extravasation”

Best Layout:

Saeyoung Kim, Georgia Institute of Technology, USA

“Designing a System for forward-Viewing 3D Intravascular Ultrasound Imaging of Blood Flow velocity: Assessing the Effect of the Catheter on Velocity Estimation in Stenoses”

Best Use of Multimedia

Douwe van Willigen, TU Delft, the Netherlands

“Algorithm to Reduce the Offset Error in Transit-Time Ultrasonic Flow Measurement”

Honorable Mention:

Gabriela Torres, UNC Chapel Hill, USA

“Harmonic Imaging Improves Delineation of Human Carotid Plaque Features by ARFI Variance of Acceleration”

Honorable Mention:

Tuhin Roy, NC State University, USA

“Multimodal Inversion for Shear Modulus and Thickness of Arteries”

Honorable Mention:

Siyun Li, University of Calgary, Canada

“Breast Tissue Mimic Phantoms for Combined Microwave and Ultrasound Imaging”



Student Events

IUS 2020 had a very engaging program for students:


  • Student Social – Student attendees had a valuable opportunity to meet and get to know their peers on the first day of the technical sessions.
  • Student Pitch Competition – The purpose of this competition was to give students an opportunity to showcase their skills in preparing and delivering a concise summary of their research. During this live event, the participants presented their work in a one-minute rapid-fire format, visually supplemented with a single PowerPoint slide. Winners are:


Best Overall:

Javier Cudeiro, Imperial College, London, UK,

“Seeing the Brain with Ultrasound”

Honorable Mention:

Graham Collins, Georgia Institute of Technology, USA

“Sub-mm robotically steerable guidewire with forward-viewing ultrasound imaging”

Honorable Mention:

Sophie Morse, Imperial College, London, UK

“Short pulses to deliver drugs to the brain”

  • Student – Professional Networking Event – This event provided student attendees with the valuable opportunity to meet both academic professors and industry representatives, combining elements of the Student-Professor and Student-Industry networking events from previous years.


Women in Engineering Virtual Event

52 attendees gathered at the virtual Women in Engineering event at IUS this year. Felice Frankel, a science photographer and a research scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, gave a talk on strategies for visual and graphical communication of research. She discussed approaches to promote visual expression through concepts and photography.


Challenge on Ultrasound Beamforming with Deep Learning (CUBDL)

The Challenge on Ultrasound Beamforming with Deep Learning (CUBDL) was offered as a component of the IEEE IUS 2020. The community was challenged to obtain the best image quality under the fastest possible frame rates after a single plane wave transmission. The challenge winners were Sven Rothlübbers from Fraunhofer MEVIS, whose network had the least complexity, and Sobhan Goudarzi from Concordia University, whose network produced the best image quality. The runners up were Yaning Wang and Zehua Li, both from Johns Hopkins University.


Workshops, Panels and Patron sessions

IEEE IUS 2020 showcased several workshops for career development and professional learning, including:

  • Ally Training Workshop
  • Resume Building Workshop
  • Grant Application Workshop
  • Overview of Structured Problem-Solving
  • Ultrasound Industry Perspectives: Career Development in Industry
  • How to Startup: From a MEMS Entrepreneur and Investor perspective


Additionally, several exhibitors and patrons organized webinars for attendees:


  • New Turnkey Preclinical Research Platforms for 3D Ultrasound-Guided Focused Ultrasound (USgFUS)
  • Ultrafast Ultrasound Volume Imaging and Integration of Row/Column Arrays into the Vantage Family
  • A New Generation of Graphical User Interface Software for the Vantage Platform: SoniVue™ QuickScan and Improved Script-Based UI Controls  
  • Verasonics Vantage: A Platform for Cutting Edge NDT Ultrasound Research


Fujifilm VisualSonics Webinar:

Vevo F2 – Empowering Researchers of Ultrasound Technology


Polytec Webinar:

Optical metrology solutions for advancing ultrasonic driven technologies




IEEE IUS 2021 is currently scheduled for  September 12-15, 2021 in Xi’an, China, Please visit conference website for Call for Papers and information and adjustments caused by COVID-19.