Historical Collection

The BMUS Historical Collection was established in 1984 to collect, document, preserve, exhibit and interpret artefacts and other material relating to diagnostic and therapeutic ultrasound in the UK. 

The current collection includes:

  • Ultrasound related hardware e.g. small scanners, transducers
  • Images, films, video and audio tapes
  • Photographs of instruments and people
  • Manufacturer's documents
  • Personal accounts, letters and interviews
  • Originals of papers, Reviews

The collection is kept in Glasgow, with historical documents in the archives of the Mitchell Library in Glasgow and some hardware items on display at the Queen Mother's Hospital. Other hardware items are kept in storage at other sites in Glasgow. 

The Collection is available to BMUS members and others for education, research and interest.

Note: some large items have been moved to the Hunterian Museum, University of Glasgow.


Contributions to / use of the collection :

Material of all types, relating to all aspects of medical ultrasound is welcome. Of particular importance and interest are documents and papers not normally kept by libraries.

If you have anything to contribute, or if you wish to view or use the collection for exhibition or research, please contact the Historical Collection Co-ordinator, via the BMUS office.


A History of Medical Ultrasound Physics

For those requiring a more detailed history and references, an excellent article on the history of ultrasound in medicine is published by Dr Joseph Woo https://www.ob-ultrasound.net/history1.html.

Also, the open access journal Medical Physics International is publishing two special issues on the History of Medical Ultrasound Physics. Part I includes articles on the first 50 years of development and on ultrasound metrology.

As part of an initiative to document the history of medical physics, the open access journal, Medical Physics International is publishing two special issues which describe the contributions of physicists and engineers to the application of ultrasound to clinical medicine. The first special issue, published in January 2021, contains four articles by Francis Duck and Kevin Martin which first document the work of pioneering physicists in first 50 years of development, followed by three articles on the development of ultrasound metrology using thermometry, radiation force and hydrophones. The second issue, to be published in Spring 2021, will include articles on the development of landmark ultrasound scanning systems and Doppler ultrasound technology.

The first special issue can be found at: http://www.mpijournal.org/MPI-v09SIi05.aspx

Part II will include articles on the development of landmark ultrasound scanners and Doppler techniques.