A pilgrimage to gravity on GPUs

Jeroen Bedorf, Simon Portegies Zwart
Leiden Observatory, Leiden University, P.O. Box 9513, 2300 RA Leiden, The Netherlands
arXiv:1204.3106v1 [astro-ph.IM] (13 Apr 2012)


   author={B{‘e}dorf}, J. and {Portegies Zwart}, S.},

   title={"{A pilgrimage to gravity on GPUs}"},

   journal={ArXiv e-prints},




   keywords={Astrophysics – Instrumentation and Methods for Astrophysics},




   adsnote={Provided by the SAO/NASA Astrophysics Data System}


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In this short review we present the developments over the last 5 decades that have led to the use of Graphics Processing Units (GPUs) for astrophysical simulations. Since the introduction of NVIDIA’s Compute Unified Device Architecture (CUDA) in 2007 the GPU has become a valuable tool for N-body simulations and is so popular these days that almost all papers about high precision N-body simulations use methods that are accelerated by GPUs. With the GPU hardware becoming more advanced and being used for more advanced algorithms like gravitational tree-codes we see a bright future for GPU like hardware in computational astrophysics.
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