Recent clinical trials have shown the efficacy of a passive acoustic device used during shock wave lithotripsy (SWL) treatment. The device uses the far-field acoustic emissions resulting from the interaction of the therapeutic shock waves with the tissue and kidney stone to diagnose the effectiveness of each shock in contributing to stone fragmentation. This paper details simulations that supported the development of that device by extending computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations of the flow and near-field pressures associated with shock-induced bubble collapse to allow estimation of those far-field acoustic emissions. This is a required stage in the development of the device, because current computational resources are not sufficient to simulate the far-field emissions to ranges of O(10 cm) using CFD. Similarly, they are insufficient to cover the duration of the entire cavitation event, and here simulate only the first part of the interaction of the bubble with the lithotripter shock wave in order to demonstrate the methods by which the far-field acoustic emissions resulting from the interaction can be estimated. A free-Lagrange method (FLM) is used to simulate the collapse of initially stable air bubbles in water as a result of their interaction with a planar lithotripter shock. To estimate the far-field acoustic emissions from the interaction, this paper developed two numerical codes using the Kirchhoff and Ffowcs William–Hawkings (FW-H) formulations. When coupled to the FLM code, they can be used to estimate the far-field acoustic emissions of cavitation events. The limitation of the technique is that it assumes that no significant nonlinear acoustic propagation occurs outside the control surface. Methods are outlined for ameliorating this problem if, as here, computational resources cannot compute the flow field to sufficient distance, although for the clinical situation discussed, this limitation is tempered by the effect of tissue absorption, which here is incorporated through the standard derating procedure. This approach allowed identification of the sources of, and explanation of trends seen in, the characteristics of the far-field emissions observed in clinic, to an extent that was sufficient for the development of this clinical device
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