IEEE Transactions on Cloud Computing

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From the January-March 2018 issue

Scalable pCT Image Reconstruction Delivered as a Cloud Service

By R. Chard, R. Madduri, N.T. Karonis, K. Chard, K.L. Duffin, C.E. Ordonez, T.D. Uram, J. Fleischauer, I.T. Foster, M.E. Papka, and J. Winans

Featured article thumbnail imageWe describe a cloud-based medical image reconstruction service designed to meet a real-time and daily demand to reconstruct thousands of images from proton cancer treatment facilities worldwide. Rapid reconstruction of a three-dimensional Proton Computed Tomography (pCT) image can require the transfer of 100 GB of data and use of approximately 120 GPU-enabled compute nodes. The nature of proton therapy means that demand for such a service is sporadic and comes from potentially hundreds of clients worldwide. We thus explore the use of a commercial cloud as a scalable and cost-efficient platform for pCT reconstruction. To address the high performance requirements of this application we leverage Amazon Web Services’ GPU-enabled cluster resources that are provisioned with high performance networks between nodes. To support episodic demand, we develop an on-demand multi-user provisioning service that can dynamically provision and resize clusters based on image reconstruction requirements, priorities, and wait times. We compare the performance of our pCT reconstruction service running on commercial cloud resources with that of the same application on dedicated local high performance computing resources. We show that we can achieve scalable and on-demand reconstruction of large scale pCT images for simultaneous multi-client requests, processing images in less than 10 minutes for less than $10 per image.

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Editorials and Announcements


  • We are pleased to announce that TCC is now indexed in Clarivate Analytics' Web of Science under the Science Citation Index (SCI) and will receive an impact factor in the 2017 Journal Citation Report.
  • Heartfelt congratulations are offered to TCC's Editor-in-Chief Hui Lei, who received a 2017 IEEE Computer Society Technical Achievement Award "for pioneering contributions to scalable access to real-world data." Read more.
  • Congratulations to Hui Lei on his reappointment as 2018-2019 Editor-in-Chief of IEEE Transactions on Cloud Computing. Dr. Lei is CTO, Watson Health Cloud at IBM, where he provides leadership on the Watson Health Cloud technical strategy and spearheads the development of the Watson Health Cloud platform.
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