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A GPU accelerated algorithm for 3D Delaunay triangulation

Thanh-Tung Cao, Ashwin Nanjappa, Mingcen Gao, Tiow-Seng Tan
National University of Singapore
National University of Singapore, 2014

@article{cao2014gpu,

   title={A GPU accelerated algorithm for 3D Delaunay triangulation},

   author={Cao, Thanh-Tung and Nanjappa, Ashwin and Gao, Mingcen and Tan, Tiow-Seng},

   year={2014}

}

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We propose the first algorithm to compute the 3D Delaunay triangulation (DT) on the GPU. Our algorithm uses massively parallel point insertion followed by bilateral flipping, a powerful local operation in computational geometry. Although a flipping algorithm is very amenable to parallel processing and has been employed to construct the 2D DT and the 3D convex hull on the GPU, to our knowledge there is no such successful attempt for constructing the 3D DT. This is because in 3D when many points are inserted in parallel, flipping gets stuck long before reaching the DT, and thus any further correction to obtain the DT is costly. In contrast, we show that by alternating between parallel point insertion and flipping, together with picking an appropriate point insertion order, one can still obtain a triangulation very close to Delaunay. We further propose an adaptive star splaying approach to subsequently transform this result into the 3D DT efficiently. In addition, we introduce several GPU speedup techniques for our implementation, which are also useful for general computational geometry algorithms. On the whole, our hybrid approach, with the GPU accelerating the main work of constructing a near-Delaunay structure and the CPU transforming that into the 3D DT, outperforms all existing sequential CPU algorithms by up to an order of magnitude, in both synthetic and real-world inputs. We also adapt our approach to the 2D DT problem and obtain similar speedup over the best sequential CPU algorithms, and up to 2 times over previous GPU algorithms.
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