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Making HPC Part of the Human Healthcare Solution

amanda randles

As someone well-versed in biomedical engineering, mathematics, applied physics, and computer science, Amanda Randles sees the benefit of high-performance computing from a multitude of perspectives. Currently, as the Alfred Winborne and Victoria Stover Mordecai Associate Professor of Biomedical Sciences at Duke University, she puts those combined capabilities to work facilitating biomedical simulations using HPC to drive insights that can reveal specifics about disease progression and potentially unlock new mitigation strategies and treatments. Her research lab has focused particularly on using massively parallel computational simulations of the circulatory system (hemodynamic simulations) for patient-specific evaluations, spanning heart diseases to cancer. At Duke, Randles also holds professor appointments in computer science, mathematics, biomedical engineering, and mechanical engineering and materials science and is a Duke Cancer Institute member.

Unlocking Potential

At SC23, Randles will provide a special showcase of her group’s unique work as part of an Invited Talk, Unlocking Potential: The Role of HPC in Computational Medicine, where she will touch on the rising importance of digital twins in the human healthcare landscape. Notably, she also has two accepted papers that delve further into her team’s hemodynamic modeling and simulation research.

In this I AM HPC profile, Randles offers a quick look into the spark that launched her award-winning career and shares what she deems the next steps for improving HPC accessibility.

amanda randles

Alfred Winborne Mordecai and Victoria Stover Mordecai Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering, Duke University

Q: What single event most made you realize you wanted a career in HPC/computing?

Randles: Booting up the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory BG/L [BlueGene/L from IBM].

Q: What do you consider your biggest contribution to the HPC/computing community?

Randles: Increasing the application of HPC for patient-specific hemodynamic models.

Q: In the past 35 years, what is the most significant overlooked breakthrough that has impacted the field in your eyes?

Randles: The advent of advanced domain decomposition techniques allows problems to be divided and distributed efficiently on massively parallel systems with minimal communication. Often, these methods can be taken for granted but play a critical role in efficiently using leadership-class systems.

Q: What would you like to see change about, within, or among the HPC/computing community?

Randles: Increased accessibility and interdisciplinary training. We have seen huge strides, especially when it comes to cloud computing, in making HPC hardware more available, but we still have a way to go to bridge the gap between HPC and other disciplines to foster more interdisciplinary advancements.

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