History

History of Sonography in Australia

History of Sonography as a Profession in Australia

History of the Ultrasonics Institute

Early Days

The story of Australian medical ultrasound began 50 years ago with the establishment in 1959 of an Ultrasound Research Section within the Commonwealth Acoustic Laboratories. Within a few years the group was recognised as one of the leading ultrasound research groups in the world.

In 1975 the group became a separate entity and its name was changed to the Ultrasonics Institute (or UI). The Institute contributed vigorously to the development of the technology and clinical applications of diagnostic ultrasound until 1997.

The materials presented in this section of the ASUM History website were assembled by a group of former UI staff and medical collaborators for the purpose of mounting a display at the WFUMB 2009 Conference. The encouragement and support of ASUM and the WFUMB 2009 Organising Committee are gratefully acknowledged.

1961 Design and construction of weakly focussing broadband transducers (George Kossoff, Ian Shepherd & Reg Allen)
1962 First images of late pregnancy at Royal Hospital for Women with Mk I Abdominal Echoscope (David Robinson, George Kossoff, George Radovanovich, Dr William Garrett)
1966 First images of breast at Royal North Shore Hospital (Jack Jellins, George Kossoff, Brian Hill, Prof. Tom Reeve)
1967 First images of eye at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital (Michael Dadd, David Robinson, George Kossoff, Dr Bill Hughes)
1967 Mk II Abdominal Echoscope (David Robinson, George Kossoff, George Radovanovich, Dr William Garrett)
1968 Publication of comprehensive article on ultrasound image artifacts (David Robinson)
1969 Development of grey scale imaging, leading to significantly improved images (George Kossoff, David Carpenter, Michael Dadd, Jack Jellins, Kaye Griffiths, Margaret Tabrett)
1972 National Health Act amended to authorise Ultrasonics Research Section to provide “research and advisory services” to the Department and Government
1973 First images of the brains of infants (George Kossoff, Margaret Tabrett, Kaye Griffiths, Dr William Garrett, Dr Peter Warren)
1973 Mini-computer installed to acquire and process ultrasound data (David Robinson, Bruce Williams)
1974 Curved Annular Phased Array installed on the Mk II Abdominal Echoscope to improve the resolution of images of the pregnant uterus (George Kossoff, David Robinson, George Radovanovich, Ian Shepherd)
1975 Ultrasonics Institute created as a separate Branch of Commonwealth Department of Health
1975 Development of the UI Octoson (George Kossoff, David Robinson, David Carpenter, Ian Shepherd, George Radovanovich)
1975 Nucleus Group licensed to manufacture the UI Octoson via a new subsidiary company Ausonics, with the first units delivered in 1976
1975 Commenced work on Ultrasound Doppler volume blood flow measurement (Robert Gill)
1978 Formal UI/RHW course commenced
1979 First Doppler paper published (Robert Gill)
1987 Aberration correction for overlying tissue (David Carpenter, Yue Li)
1989 Ultrasonics Institute transferred to CSIRO and renamed Ultrasonics Laboratory
1990 Sponsored research undertaken for Defence Department in collaboration with GEC-Marconi to develop a 1mm resolution 3D imager for imaging sea-mines in turbid water
1992 Sponsored research undertaken for Meat Research Corporation
1996 Colour Doppler imaging system licensed to Philips for use in their commercial equipment
1997 Staff split between CSIRO Marsfield and Lindfield
2005 Doppler flow measurement system licensed to Philips for use in their commercial equipment
1965 First demonstration of fetal spine, allowing identification of head from trunk and limbs and leading to determinations of fetal size and growth
1966 Demonstration of fetal intracranial echoes
1968 Demonstration of fetal orbits, heart, bladder, kidneys and scrotum
1970 Introduction of grey scale ultrasound, improving dramatically the demonstration of normal and abnormal structures in the fetus, placenta and mother
1976 Establishment of criteria for recognising placental ageing using grey scale ultrasound
1976 First discussion of fetal surgery
1980 Display of fetal brain development by grey scale ultrasound
1980 Monitoring of fetal umbilical venous blood flow in normal and complicated pregnancies
1980 Demonstration of fetal lung, liver and bowel maturation by grey scale ultrasound
1993 Development of real-time quasi-3D obstetric ultrasound
1974 Grey scale ultrasound atlas of normal infant brain produced
1975 Assessment of hydrocephalus
1978 Abdominal grey scale ultrasound in children
1980 Production of tables and graphs of normal cerebral ventricular sizes in children
1980 Demonstration of detailed posterior cranial fossa anatomy in the neonate
These posters come from a large collection of early Ultrasonics Institute historical material held by the PowerHouse Museum in Sydney. We are most grateful for their assistance in photographing the posters for this web-site.

Historic UI Movies

Neonatal Heads – 1976 (10 min)

Research Octoson – 1978 (10 min)

Ausonics Octoson – 1978 (12 min)

Quasi-3D imaging – 1997 (4 min)

Historic UI Photographs

Photographs of People
Photographs of Equipment
Photographs of Christmas Cards
Miscellaneous Photographs
Scans – Obstetric and General
Scans – Paediatric
Scans – Breast
Scans – Scrotum & Thyroid
Scans – Eye
Scans – Doppler

Pioneers of Australian Ultrasound

Overview

While the Ultrasonics Institute and its collaborators dominated the earliest years of ultrasound development in Australia, a number of pioneering Australian clinicians were quick to recognise the potential of the new modality and decided to explore it for themselves. Notable amongst these were*:

  • Dr Ian McDonald (Melbourne, 1966)
  • Dr John McCaffrey (Brisbane, 1966)
  • Dr John Morrison (Brisbane, 1970)
  • Dr Jim Roche (Sydney, 1971)
  • Dr David Cooper (Brisbane, 1972)
  • Dr Don Aickin (Melbourne, 1972)
  • Dr John Stewart (Auckland, 1972)
  • Drs Dugdale and Wong (Melbourne, 1973)
  • Drs Cook, Furness and Verco (Adelaide, 1973)
  • Dr Stan Reid (Perth, 1973)
  • Drs Corrie, Taylor and Campbell (Hobart, 1973)

* Information from: Diagnostic Ultrasound, Peter Verco, Australasian Radiology 1981; 25th Anniversary Issue 115-123.

Photographs

Articles on the history of ultrasound in Australia

Other articles that may be of interest

  • Ultrasonics Research in Medicine in Australia – A Review, George Kossoff, Ultrasonics International 1973; 199-205.
  • An Historical Review of Ultrasonic Investigations at the National Acoustic Laboratories, George Kossoff, Journal of Clinical Ultrasound 1975; 3(1): 39-43.
  • Diagnostic Ultrasound – The View from Down Under, George Kossoff, Journal of Clinical Ultrasound 1978; 6(3):144-149.
  • Diagnostic Ultrasound, Peter Verco, Australasian Radiology 1981; 25th Anniversary Issue 115-123.
  • Ultrasonics Research in Australia, David Robinson, Journal of Electrical and Electronics Engineering, Australia 1984; 4(2) 126-132.
  • DMU – The First 10 years, Kaye Griffiths and Margaret Tabrett. ASUM Ultrasound Bulletin February 1999; 2 (1).
  • The Second Decade of the DMU 1989 – 1999, Jenny Mitchell. ASUM Ultrasound Bulletin May 1999; 2 (2).
  • Australian Contributions to Medical Diagnostic Ultrasound, David Robinson, Acoustics Australia 2000; 28(3) 109-112.
  • Personal History, George Kossoff and Stanley Barnett, Biological Effects of Ultrasound: Developments of Safety Guidelines Part 1: Personal Histories Ed Nyborg WL. Ultrasound in Medicine & Biol., 2000; 26(6): 911-964.
  • History of the Australasian Society for Ultrasound in Medicine, David Carpenter and Kaye Griffiths, ASUM Ultrasound Bulletin March 2003; 6 (1).

External Links

History of ASUM

Early Days

As early as 1969 it was becoming clear that ultrasound would become an important diagnostic modality. A professional society was needed to address issues such as education and training, professional standards, research and scientific interchange, bioeffects and safety.

ASUM was formed in 1970, and its first Annual Scientific Meeting was held the following year. This makes it one of the earliest national ultrasound societies to be formed, and it was the first to establish qualifications (the DDU and DMU) to facilitate the regulation of standards of practice.

A distinctive feature of ASUM is that it brings together on an equal footing medical practitioners, sonographers and scientists from a multitude of specialist areas.

Formation and Development

Ten years after the establishment of ultrasound research in Australia, and with commercial equipment becoming available, it was clear that there was a need for a specialized society to perform the learned society role for this new modality.

At a meeting attended largely by UI staff and their medical collaborators the Australian Society for Ultrasound in Medicine and Biology was formed. A Constitution was agreed to, and a newsletter and series of Annual Scientific Meetings* were commenced. By the end of 1970 there were 40 members, and the first Annual Scientific meeting in 1971 attracted 60 participants.

* The WFUMB 2009 conference incorporated the 39th Annual Scientific Meeting of ASUM

Office Bearers

Past Presidents
Past CEOs
Past Office Bearers
Year President Vice-President Secretary Treasurer
1970/72 Dr George Kossoff Dr William Garrett Mr Michael Dadd Dr Cyril Sharp
1972/73 Dr William Garrett Dr David Robinson Mr Michael Dadd Dr Cyril Sharp
1973/74 Dr William Garrett Dr David Robinson Mr Michael Dadd Mr Michael Dadd
1974/76 Dr David Robinson Dr Herbert Hughes Dr David Carpenter Mr Michael Dadd
1976/77 Dr Herbert Hughes Mr Michael Dadd Dr David Carpenter Dr David Robinson
1977/79 Mr Michael Dadd Dr Ian McDonald Dr David Carpenter Dr David Robinson
1979/80 Dr Ian McDonald Dr Thomas Reeve Dr Jack Jellins Dr David Robinson
1980/81 Dr Peter Verco Dr Thomas Reeve Dr Jack Jellins Dr David Robinson
1981/82 Dr David Carpenter Dr Thomas Reeve Dr Jack Jellins Dr David Robinson
1982/83 Dr John McCaffrey Dr Stan Reid Dr Jack Jellins Dr David Robinson
1983/84 Dr James Ryan Dr Stan Reid Dr Jack Jellins Dr David Robinson
1984/85 Dr Thomas Reeve Dr John McCaffrey Dr Jack Jellins Dr David Robinson
1985/86 Dr Stan Reid Dr John McCaffrey Dr Jack Jellins Dr David Robinson
1986/87 Dr Frederick Lomas Dr John McCaffrey Dr Jack Jellins Dr David Robinson
1987/88 Dr Beresford Buttery Dr Stan Reid Dr Bev. Barraclough Dr David Robinson
1988/89 Dr Peter Duffy Dr Stan Reid Dr Bev. Barraclough Dr Robert Gill
1989/90 Dr Garry Lequesne Dr Jack Jellins Dr Bev. Barraclough Dr Robert Gill
1990/91 Dr Robert Gill Dr Jack Jellins Dr Lach. de Crespigny Dr Bev. Barraclough
1991/92 Dr Bev. Barraclough Dr Brian Pridmore Dr Lach. de Crespigny Dr Peter Wilson
1992/93 Dr Lach. de Crespigny (position deleted) Prof Robert Gibson
Prof John Harris
Dr Peter Warren
1993/94 Dr Lach. de Crespigny Prof John Harris Dr Peter Warren
1994/95 Dr Peter Warren Dr Andrew Ngu Dr David Ellwood
1995/96 Dr Peter Warren Dr Andrew Ngu Dr Laurie Wilson
1996/98 Dr Susie Woodward Dr Andrew Ngu Dr Laurie Wilson
1998/99 Dr Andrew Ngu Dr Andrew Little Dr Maurice Molan
1999/00 Dr Andrew Ngu Mrs Mary Young Dr Maurice Molan
2000/01 Dr Stanley Barnett Mrs Mary Young Dr Maurice Molan
2001/02 Dr Stanley Barnett Mrs Mary Young Dr Glenn McNally
2002/03 Dr Glenn McNally Mrs Roslyn Savage Dr David Carpenter
2003/04 Dr Glenn McNally Mrs Roslyn Savage Dr Andrew Ngu
2004/06 Dr David Rogers Mrs Roslyn Savage Dr Andrew Ngu
2006/07 Dr Matthew Andrews Mrs Roslyn Savage Dr Andrew Ngu
2007/08 Dr Matthew Andrews Mrs Roslyn Savage Dr Andrew Ngu
2008/10 Prof Ron Benzie Mrs Roslyn Savage Dr Andrew Ngu
Other Office Bearers
Year Ultrasonographer’s Group President AJUM Editor DDU Board Chair DMU Board Chair
1970 – 1976 N/A Members of ASUM Executive N/A N/A
1976 – 1978 N/A Members of ASUM Executive Dr William Garrett N/A
1978 – 1980 Mrs Margaret Tabbrett Members of ASUM Executive Dr William Garrett Mrs Margaret Tabbrett
1980 – 1983 Ms Kaye Griffiths Members of ASUM Executive Dr Peter Verco Mrs Margaret Tabbrett
1983 – 1984 Mr Roy Manning Members of ASUM Executive Dr Peter Verco Ms Kaye Griffiths
1984 – 1985 Ms Maureen Vargas Members of ASUM Executive Dr Peter Verco Ms Kaye Griffiths
1985 – 1986 Ms Maureen Varga Dr Rob Gill Dr Peter Verco Ms Kaye Griffiths
1986 – 1989 Mrs Sue Davies Dr Rob Gill Dr Peter Verco Ms Kaye Griffiths
1989 – 1990 Ms Jan Marshall Dr Rob Gill Dr Peter Verco Ms Kaye Griffiths
1990 – 1992 Mr John Hassell Dr Rob Gill Dr James Syme Ms Janet Radford
1992 – 1993 Ms Jennifer Kidd Dr Rob Gill Dr James Syme Ms Janet Radford
1993 – 1995 Mr Richard Allen Dr Rob Gill Dr James Syme Ms Jenny Mitchell
1995 – 1997 N/A Dr Rob Gill Dr James Syme Ms Jenny Mitchell
1997 – 1999 N/A Prof Rob Gibson Dr James Syme Mrs Jill Clarke
1999 – 2001 N/A Prof Rob Gibson Dr Chris Wriedt Mrs Jill Clarke
2001 – 2002 N/A Dr Glenn McNally Dr Chris Wriedt Mrs Jill Clarke
2002 – 2006 N/A Dr Roger Davies Dr Chris Wriedt Ms Roslyn Savage
2007 – 2008 N/A Prof Ron Benzie Dr Chris Wriedt Mr Stephen Bird
2008 – 2009 N/A Prof George Condous Monica Pahuja Ms Margaret Condon
2009 – N/A Dr George Larcos Monica Pahuja Ms Margaret Condon
ASUM Resources
  • DMU – The First 10 years, Kaye Griffiths and Margaret Tabrett. ASUM Ultrasound Bulletin February 1999; 2 (1)
  • The Second Decade of the DMU 1989 – 1999, Jenny Mitchell. ASUM Ultrasound Bulletin May 1999; 2 (2)
Annual Scientific Meetings
Year Location Convenor attendance
1971 Royal Hospital for Women, Sydney Dr George Kossoff 60
1972 Medical School, University of Sydney Dr William Garrett
1973 Commonwealth Acoustic Laboratories, Sydney Dr David Robinson
1974 Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney Dr Jim Ryan 60
1975 Royal North Shore Hospital, Sydney (joint meeting with Nuc. Med and Physics in Med. & Biology conference) Dr George Kossoff 150
1976 Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane Dr John McCaffrey
1977 Royal Hospital for Women, Sydney Dr William Garrett 140
1978 St. Vincents Hospital, Melbourne Dr Ian McDonald 200
1979 Adelaide Town Hall Dr Peter Verco
1980 Sydney (joint meeting with International Congress of Acoustics) Dr Peter Duffy 241
1981 Chevron Paradise Hotel, Surfers Paradise Dr John McCaffrey 237
1982 National Academy of Science, Canberra Dr Fred Lomas 214
1983 Hilton Hotel, Melbourne Dr Beresford Buttery 259
1984 Hilton International, Adelaide Dr Suzie Langlois 271
1985 Sydney Hilton & Centrepoint, Sydney (with WFUMB’85) Dr William Garrett 1200
1986 King Ambassador Hotel, Perth Dr Richard Picker 200+
1987 Rex Hotel, Canberra Dr Fred Lomas 385
1988 Conrad International Hotel, Gold Coast Dr Greg O’Brien 369
1989 Hilton International, Melbourne Dr Lach. de Crespigny 460
1990 Adelaide Convention Centre Dr Barry Chatterton 621
1991 Darling Harbour Convention Centre, Sydney Dr Dave Robinson 796
1992 Christchurch Town Hall, Christchurch Dr Gerald Duff 269
1993 Southern Cross Hotel, Melbourne Dr Susie Woodward 665
1994 Burswood Convention Centre, Perth Dr John Fraser 477
1995 Sydney Convention Centre, Sydney Dr Bruno Guiffre 638
1996 Brisbane Sheraton Hotel, Brisbane Dr Greg O’Brien, Mrs Sue Davies 576
1997 Wrest Point Hotel and Convention Centre, Tasmania Dr R Jones 401
1998 Crown Towers, Melbourne Dr R Dowling 847
1999 Adelaide Convention Centre, Adelaide Dr Barry Chatterton 471
2000 Carlton Hotel, Auckland Dr G Parry 365
2001 Sydney Convention & Exhibition Centre, Sydney Dr Fergus Scott 700
2002 Conrad Jupiters, Gold Coast Mrs Roslyn Savage 498
2003 Burswood International Resort Casino & Convention Centre, Perth Dr J Dickinson, Mrs Jenni Kidd 430
2004 Star City, Sydney Dr Glenn McNally 600
2005 Adelaide Convention Centre, Hyatt Regency, Adelaide Mr Steven Bird, A/Prof Roger Davies 582
2006 Melbourne Convention Centre, Melbourne Drs M Andrews and Andrew Ngu 600+
2007 Cairns Convention Centre, Cairns Dr E Carter, Mrs D Moir 500
2008 Skycity Auckland Convention Centre, Auckland Drs David Rogers and D Davies-Payne 470+
2009 Sydney Convention & Exhibition Centre, Sydney (joint meeting with WFUMB 2009 and incorporating MDW 2009) Prof Robert Gibson 2400
2010 Gold Coast Ms Ros Savage
2011 Melbourne Ms Margaret Condon
2012 Sydney Dr Fergus Scott
2013 Sydney
2014 Melbourne
2015 Sydney
Historic ASUM Photographs

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