Accelerating S3D: A GPGPU Case Study

Kyle Spafford, Jeremy Meredith, Jeffrey Vetter, Jacqueline Chen, Ray Grout and Ramanan Sankaran
Oak Ridge National Laboratory, 1 Bethel Valley Road MS 6173, Oak Ridge, TN 3783
Euro-Par 2009 – Parallel Processing Workshops, Lecture Notes in Computer Science, 2010, Volume 6043/2010, 122-131


   title={Accelerating S3D: A GPGPU Case Study},

   author={Spafford, K. and Meredith, J. and Vetter, J. and Chen, J. and Grout, R. and Sankaran, R.},

   booktitle={Euro-Par 2009–Parallel Processing Workshops},





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The graphics processor (GPU) has evolved into an appealing choice for high performance computing due to its superior memory bandwidth, raw processing power, and flexible programmability. As such, GPUs represent an excellent platform for accelerating scientific applications. This paper explores a methodology for identifying applications which present significant potential for acceleration. In particular, this work focuses on experiences from accelerating S3D, a high-fidelity turbulent reacting flow solver. The acceleration process is examined from a holistic viewpoint, and includes details that arise from different phases of the conversion. This paper also addresses the issue of floating point accuracy and precision on the GPU, a topic of immense importance to scientific computing. Several performance experiments are conducted, and results are presented from the NVIDIA Tesla C1060 GPU. We generalize from our experiences to provide a roadmap for deploying existing scientific applications on heterogeneous GPU platforms.
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