The American Society of Echocardiography (ASE) is a professional organization of physicians, cardiac sonographers, nurses and scientists involved in echocardiography, the use of ultrasound to image the heart and vascular system. The organization was founded in 1975 and has more than 16,000 members nationally and internationally. The American Society of Echocardiography is committed to excellence in cardiovascular ultrasound and its application to patient care through education, advocacy, research, innovation and service to our[who?] members and the public. The society also provides research grants and scholarships to support advances in cardiovascular care.