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Professor Francis Duck
Professor Francis Duck

Internal News - 19 June 2007

Visiting Professor - Francis Duck - receives MBE

Professor Francis Duck, Visiting Professor in the Department of Physics, was awarded an MBE in recognition of his services to Healthcare in the Queen's Birthday Honours List.

Francis Duck is a medical physicist who has spent most of his career in medical ultrasound.

He was visiting Senior Lecturer in the Department of Physics (Acoustics Group) from 1999 to 2002. In June 2002, he was made Visiting Professor in the Department of Physics and currently works within the Medical Physics Research Group.

He has recently retired as Head of Imaging Physics in the Department of Medical Physics & Bioengineering at the Royal United Hospital Bath NHS Trust, which has a strong reputation for its work on ultrasound safety and exposure measurements.

He has a close and productive research collaboration with the University and has, for many years, enthusiastically conveyed his knowledge of medical physics to final year undergraduates.

Professor Duck was trained at University College Hospital and St Bartholomew's Hospital in London, joining in 1966 at the time of articulated arm scanners and early CW Doppler.

He initially studied miniature Doppler transducers devices during an appointment in St John's Newfoundland, publishing early evidence of their use for intra-oesophageal and intra-venous placement.

He then moved to the Mayo Clinic to work on ultrasonic transmission image reconstruction and early duplex imaging, before being invited to return to the Institute of Cancer Research, Sutton, where he studied attenuation correction methods.

In 1978 he made a final move to the Royal United Hospital in Bath to help to establish a new department of medical physics with close links to the University of Bath. Since then he has worked on the assessment of safety in diagnostic ultrasound, especially on the measurement of output and consideration of bioeffects mechanisms. He has been involved in a number of studies related to breast cancer, including the development of an automated 3D ultrasound scanner for breast cancer diagnosis.

Professor Duck helped to establish the British Medical Ultrasound Society (BMUS) Safety Group, has been a member and chair of the Safety Committee of European Federation of Societies for Ultrasound in Medicine & Biology (EFSUMB), and is currently a member of the World Federation for Ultrasound in Medicine & Biology (WFUMB) Safety Committee.

Non-linear effects in ultrasound have been a particular interest, both for acoustic measurement and in harmonic imaging.