Cross Cancer Institute

Facilities are provided by the Medical Physics Dept. of the Cross Cancer Institute, Alberta Health Services, the University of Alberta and University of Alberta Hospitals. CCI facilities include:

  • Two Tomotherapy Hi-Art™ systems
  • Seven Varian linear accelerators with multileaf collimators and electronic portal imagers
  • a Pantak orthovoltage x-ray machine
  • Two Phillips Large bore CT-simulators
  • a Nucletron MicroSelectron High Dose Rate (HDR) system
  • Two Nucletron Pulsed Dose Rate (PDR) systems

For radiation treatment planning, the CCI uses several different systems. The workhorse is the Varian Eclipse™ treatment planning system used for external beam treatments including conformal and intensity modulated radiation treatment (IMRT). It superseded two other treatment planning systems in the spring 2007; an in-house developed Alberta Treatment Planning (ATP) system, used for simple 2d external beam planning and Helax TMS, a commercial treatment planning system used for 3d external beam treatment planning. The Tomotherapy Hi-Art™ system has its own specialized calculation engine consisting of 15 dual processor computers. The brachytherapy program includes a Nucletron Oncentra system for planning PDR and Varian Variseed software.

Comprehensive diagnostic equipment is available, including CT, MRI, SPECT and PET imaging systems. All three MRI units; a 1.5T MRI, 3T MRI/MRS and 9.4T animal MRI/MRS are new as is a Toshiba 64 slice CT scanner. The cyclotron / PET facility were installed in 2002-2004. The cyclotron is part of the the Centre for Biological Imaging and Adaptive Radiotherapy (CBIAR). Follow the links for a more comprehensive list of equipment in three clinical areas:

Centre for Biological Imaging and Adaptive Radiotherapy (CBIAR) at the CCI

This facility houses:

  1. an experimental whole body Linac-MR System (current under development)
  2. a cyclotron / PET facility for oncological applications
  3. a research 3T MRI and spectroscopy system.
  4. a research 9.4T MRI and spectroscopy system.

More information about the CBIAR Facility can be found here

Mechanical, Electronics and Computer Resources

The CCI has excellent facilities for the fabrication and maintenance of equipment required for research activities and clinical needs.

  • The machine shop is well equipped. New equipment recently acquired includes a Computer Numerical Control (CNC) milling machine, and a HAAS CNC lathe.
  • A range of electronic equipment is available for making dosimetric measurements. This includes a Wellhofer dosimetry system, a landauer microstar TLD reader, a Vidar Diagnostic Pro film scanner, 2 Vidar VXR-16 film scanners and various ion chamber and solid state detectors.
  • A number of computers (typically with Intel Core, or Xeon class processors) running Windows and/or Linux are available for the short-term use of visitors, graduate students and faculty. In addition, two linux clusters and a GPU computer are available for specialized compute intensive simulations. The first cluster consists of 12 computer nodes; each with two dual core AMD 64 bit processors, and a head node with an AMD Athalon 64bit processor. The second cluster consists of a head node and 3 computer nodes, each with 512GB of memory and 4 AMD Opteron 6300 Series processors.  Each processor has 16 cores for a cluster total of 192 calculation cores)  The GPU computer has 8 Nvidia Tesla M2090 compute modules for a total of 4092 CUDA cores available for parallel processing.  All computers are tied to the ACB local area network (lan) with 100Mb or gigabit ethernet for sharing of resources. Both clusters are currently setup to run EGSnrc, BEAMnrc and Penelope simulations. 
    The computation resources are maintained by a staff of two department IT personel.
  • The Medical Physics Department has a capable staff of Technical Equipment Officers (TEOs) in the Technology Management Group (TMG) that manage the service life of most electrical and electronic equipment at the CCI. This group is divided up into two specialties, one group services the treatment equipment such as the linear accelerator and Tomotherapy units and the other group services diagnostic and lab equipment.


The Abdul Khaliq Library at the Cross Cancer Institute contains approximately 2,000 volumes and 68 current journal subscriptions. In addition, this library is a part of the NEOS consortium. NEOS is a consortium of academic and government libraries in central Alberta that share a catalogue and collaborate with each other. Clients of the Abdul Khaliq Library have access to volumes and journals contained in the other member libraries of the consortium.

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