NTRS - NASA Technical Reports Server

Back to Results
Use Computer-Aided Tools to Parallelize Large CFD ApplicationsPorting applications to high performance parallel computers is always a challenging task. It is time consuming and costly. With rapid progressing in hardware architectures and increasing complexity of real applications in recent years, the problem becomes even more sever. Today, scalability and high performance are mostly involving handwritten parallel programs using message-passing libraries (e.g. MPI). However, this process is very difficult and often error-prone. The recent reemergence of shared memory parallel (SMP) architectures, such as the cache coherent Non-Uniform Memory Access (ccNUMA) architecture used in the SGI Origin 2000, show good prospects for scaling beyond hundreds of processors. Programming on an SMP is simplified by working in a globally accessible address space. The user can supply compiler directives, such as OpenMP, to parallelize the code. As an industry standard for portable implementation of parallel programs for SMPs, OpenMP is a set of compiler directives and callable runtime library routines that extend Fortran, C and C++ to express shared memory parallelism. It promises an incremental path for parallel conversion of existing software, as well as scalability and performance for a complete rewrite or an entirely new development. Perhaps the main disadvantage of programming with directives is that inserted directives may not necessarily enhance performance. In the worst cases, it can create erroneous results. While vendors have provided tools to perform error-checking and profiling, automation in directive insertion is very limited and often failed on large programs, primarily due to the lack of a thorough enough data dependence analysis. To overcome the deficiency, we have developed a toolkit, CAPO, to automatically insert OpenMP directives in Fortran programs and apply certain degrees of optimization. CAPO is aimed at taking advantage of detailed inter-procedural dependence analysis provided by CAPTools, developed by the University of Greenwich, to reduce potential errors made by users. Earlier tests on NAS Benchmarks and ARC3D have demonstrated good success of this tool. In this study, we have applied CAPO to parallelize three large applications in the area of computational fluid dynamics (CFD): OVERFLOW, TLNS3D and INS3D. These codes are widely used for solving Navier-Stokes equations with complicated boundary conditions and turbulence model in multiple zones. Each one comprises of from 50K to 1,00k lines of FORTRAN77. As an example, CAPO took 77 hours to complete the data dependence analysis of OVERFLOW on a workstation (SGI, 175MHz, R10K processor). A fair amount of effort was spent on correcting false dependencies due to lack of necessary knowledge during the analysis. Even so, CAPO provides an easy way for user to interact with the parallelization process. The OpenMP version was generated within a day after the analysis was completed. Due to sequential algorithms involved, code sections in TLNS3D and INS3D need to be restructured by hand to produce more efficient parallel codes. An included figure shows preliminary test results of the generated OVERFLOW with several test cases in single zone. The MPI data points for the small test case were taken from a handcoded MPI version. As we can see, CAPO's version has achieved 18 fold speed up on 32 nodes of the SGI O2K. For the small test case, it outperformed the MPI version. These results are very encouraging, but further work is needed. For example, although CAPO attempts to place directives on the outer- most parallel loops in an interprocedural framework, it does not insert directives based on the best manual strategy. In particular, it lacks the support of parallelization at the multi-zone level. Future work will emphasize on the development of methodology to work in a multi-zone level and with a hybrid approach. Development of tools to perform more complicated code transformation is also needed.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Jin, H. (NASA Ames Research Center Moffett Field, CA United States)
Frumkin, M. (NASA Ames Research Center Moffett Field, CA United States)
Yan, J. (NASA Ames Research Center Moffett Field, CA United States)
Date Acquired
August 19, 2013
Publication Date
February 1, 2000
Subject Category
Computer Programming and Software
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

Related Records

IDRelationTitle20000064579Analytic PrimaryWelcome to the NASA High Performance Computing and Communications Computational Aerosciences (CAS) Workshop 2000
Document Inquiry