Multi-element high-intensity focused ultrasound phased arrays in the shape of hemispheres are currently used in clinics for thermal lesioning in deep brain structures. Certain side effects of overheating non-targeted tissues and skull bones have been revealed. Here, an approach is developed to mitigate these effects. A specific design of a fully populated 256-element 1-MHz array shaped as a spherical segment (F-number, F# = 1) and filled by randomly distributed equal-area polygonal elements is proposed. Capability of the array to generate high-amplitude shock fronts at the focus is tested in simulations by combining three numerical algorithms for linear and nonlinear field modeling and aberration correction. The algorithms are based on the combination of the Rayleigh integral, a linear pseudo-spectral time domain Kelvin–Voigt model, and nonlinear Westervelt model to account for the effects of inhomogeneities, aberrations, reflections, absorption, nonlinearity, and shear waves in the skull. It is shown that the proposed array can generate nonlinear waveforms with shock amplitudes >60 MPa at the focus deep inside the brain without exceeding the existing technical limitation on the intensity of 40 W/cm2 at the array elements. Such shock amplitudes are sufficient for mechanical ablation of brain tissues using the boiling histotripsy approach and implementation of other shock-based therapies.

You do not currently have access to this content.