Posts Tagged ‘impact’

Post-PASI training in Chile

Sunday, August 7th, 2011

See the News announcement (in Spanish) of the course at the host university website.

Find lecture slides online and follow the links for recorded lectures on iTunes U.

The intense two weeks of the PASI in January 2011 covered a broad range of topics, from basics of CUDA programming, parallel linear algebra and fast N-body algorithms, to a selection of computationally intensive applications.

The institute generated such great interest locally, that the HPC group at Universidad Técnica Federico Santa María (UTFSM) was motivated to organize a follow-on training event. They invited PASI organizer, Prof. Lorena Barba, to lead such an effort.

The post-PASI training is taking place from August 8 to September 3rd, and will cover the basics of the GPU architecture and CUDA programming, use of libraries such as CUSP and Thrust, and applications.

Christopher Cooper, PhD candidate at Boston University under Prof. Barba's supervision.

Christopher Cooper, PhD candidate at Boston University under Prof. Barba's supervision.

The series of 10 lectures and 8 hands-on lab sessions is being instructed by Prof. Barba’s PhD student Christopher Cooper, who is a graduate of UTFSM in Mechanical Engineering. He first visited Prof. Barba at University of Bristol in 2008 as a fellow of the EU-funded project “Scientific Computing Advanced Training”, and then applied to Boston University for PhD studies, which he started in January 2010. Christopher is a recipient of Becas Chile, awarded by CONICYT.

This new one-month CUDA course at UTFSM has garnered tremendous interest. The maximum capacity of 25 participants was quickly reached, and email messages continued pouring from interested students up until the first day of classes; unfortunately, there were not enough places to accommodate everyone. The limited capacity is dictated by the hands-on lab sessions, which are carried out with access to a small cluster locally with 8 GPUs, and with guest access to Boston University’s 32-GPU bungee cluster.

Participants in the course come from various departments at UTFSM, from nearby Universidad de Valparaíso and Universidad Católica de Valparaíso, and even as far as Universidad de Concepción and the ALMA observatory, in Atacama.

A detailed syllabus of this intense course is available for each week of activities (including lecture slides and references). Note that the course is being instructed in Spanish, but the lecture slides are in English.

Screencasts are being uploaded shortly after each lecture, using the PASI collection of media on iTunes U.

PASI inspires TADMAC seminar series at UNAM

Sunday, May 1st, 2011

TADMAC stands for “Tecnologías de Alto Desempeño Aplicadas a la Modelación Matemática y Computacional”, meaning: High-performance technologies applied to mathematical and computational modeling. This is a new seminar series created to cover in greater depth the topics presented at the PASI in Valparaíso, and to apply them to the research topics of interest to the participants at Mexico’s national university, UNAM.

A group of Latin American participants at PASI, Valparaíso, with Dr Luis Miguel de la Cruz fourth from right.

A group of Latin American participants at PASI, Valparaíso, with Dr Luis Miguel de la Cruz fourth from right.

Dr Luis Miguel de la Cruz, faculty member at UNAM’s Institute of Geophysics, is one of the organizers of this new seminar series, which runs weekly from March to June 2011. He explained to Prof Lorena Barba, PASI lead organizer, that before PASI the various participants from Mexico were working in isolation on topics involving parallel computing. Attending PASI created the opportunity for them to learn about the work each of them was carrying out, in addition to learning from leaders of the international scientific computing community about the cutting-edge tools being used for massively parallel computing in different areas of application.

During PASI, Luis Miguel and the other Mexican participants reflected on the need to disseminate back at UNAM the various topics covered during the institute. Thus, they set out to, each of them, in collaboration with other researchers at UNAM, study in more depth one of these topics and prepare for its dissemination via a seminar at TADMAC. In this first stage of the seminar series, each speaker is introducing the topic and developing simple examples. In a second stage starting August 2011, they will aim to show how the tools and techniques are being used in their own research projects.

They have started a TADMAC Google group, which currently counts 79 members from several educational institutions in Mexico. They also were inspired from PASI to share online all the educational materials developed for the seminars, including videos of seminars. All of the PASI participants from Mexico are currently attending the TADMAC seminars, which draw between 30 and 50 people each week.

Other participants of PASI contributing to the TADMAC seminars include:

  • Emilio Zavala Sosa, MSc student in Earth Sciences—he is working on a problem involving Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) applying Newton’s method for linearization of the equations. After PASI, he decided to make use of Python tools, and also FEniCS to solve his problems in parallel with PETSc.
  • Daniel Monsivais Velázquez, MSc student in Computer Science and Engineering—he is carrying out a comparative study with CUDA, OpenMP and PETSc for the solution of two-phase flow problems. He currently is refining his measurements using new knowledge acquired at PASI.
  • Saúl Piedra González, MSc student in Engineering (Temixco, Morelos)—he is working with the front-tracking method for simulation of bubbles in fluids. He is now using CUSP and Thrust to solve his equations on GPU hardware.
  • Michel Rivero Corona, PhD student in Engineering (Temixco, Morelos)—he works in magnetohydrodynamics, and aims to carry out numerical simulations to compare with experimental results. He is also using CUSP and Thrust in his simulation codes.
  • Antonio Muñoz Flores, MSc student in Computer Science and Engineering (Cuaititlán)—he is working with the lattice Boltzmann method (LBM) in fluid dynamics simulation. He is currently using OpenCL to parallelize  his codes.
  • Ursula Iturrarán Viveros, associate professor at the Faculty of Science (Mexico City)—she is working in computational fluid dynamics and earthquake simulation, and currently is developing some of her methods with CUSP and Thrust.

Luis Miguel himself is directing a group of experts to develop simulation for oil reservoirs. They are developing (i) a finite volume method, (ii) a streamline-based simulator, and (iii) a finite element method code using FEniCS. In all cases, they are using PETSc and CUDA for the solution of the systems of equations. Luis Miguel is also working on problems of fluid mixing, for which he develops software using generic programming techniques, and is creating CUDA kernels based on CUSP and Thrust.

New collaboration forged at PASI

Wednesday, April 20th, 2011

Jeff Stuart in a classic tourist photo spot at Viña del Mar: the flower clock.

Jeff Stuart in a classic tourist photo spot at Viña del Mar: the flower clock.

David Ketcheson and Jefferey Stuart—both PASI 2011 participants who met while in Chile—have formed a team of Applied Mathematicians and Computer Scientists from KAUST, UC Davis, University of Washington, and the American University of Beirut, to work on the explicit solution of hyperbolic partial differential equations on GPUs.

Specifically, the team has started work on porting compute-intensive Riemann solvers to CUDA for use in the package PyCLAW and for standalone use. They are preparing to submit their work as a paper to InPar 2011 and as a poster to SC 2011.

David Ketcheson and family, posing in front of the Naval Museum in Viña del Mar.

David Ketcheson and family, posing in front of the Naval Museum in Viña del Mar.

Jefferey Stuart is a PhD student at University of California, Davis, under the supervision of Prof. John Owens. He has focused almost exclusively on using GPUs in his graduate work, notably creating a MapReduce implementation on a cluster of GPUs. Jeff explicitly wanted to attend the PASI in Chile to network with other researchers with the purpose of starting new collaborations. It is already paying off for him to have participated!

David Ketcheson is an Assistant Professor of Applied Mathematics at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology since July 2009. Previously, he was a graduate student at the University of Washington, and a US Department of Energy Computational Science Graduate Fellow. His doctoral supervisor was renowned Professor Randall J. LeVeque.

The new collaboration between David and Jeff was instigated by Aron Ahmadia, a computational scientist from the KAUST Supercomputing Lab, who met Jeff at the PASI and invited him to KAUST with the idea of getting Jeff and David to work together. This initiative was strengthened by the in-person meeting at KAUST, during a workshop that David says was in great part organized during PASI—being in Valparaiso together with Matthew Knepley (PASI lecturer) and Aron Ahmadia (participant) allowed them to plan the event.

This is the type of ripple effect that a successful scientific gathering aims to have. We are grateful to David, Jeff, Matt and Aron for coming to Chile for this PASI and helping make it a success.