Developing subdomain allocation algorithms based on spatial and communicational constraints to accelerate dust storm simulation

Zhipeng Gui, Manzhu Yu, Chaowei Yang, Yunfeng Jiang, Songqing Chen, Jizhe Xia, Qunying Huang, Kai Liu, Zhenlong Li, Mohammed Anowarul Hassan, Baoxuan Jin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Dust storm has serious disastrous impacts on environment, human health, and assets. The developments and applications of dust storm models have contributed significantly to better understand and predict the distribution, intensity and structure of dust storms. However, dust storm simulation is a data and computing intensive process. To improve the computing performance, high performance computing has been widely adopted by dividing the entire study area into multiple subdomains and allocating each subdomain on different computing nodes in a parallel fashion. Inappropriate allocation may introduce imbalanced task loads and unnecessary communications among computing nodes. Therefore, allocation is a key factor that may impact the efficiency of parallel process. An allocation algorithm is expected to consider the computing cost and communication cost for each computing node to minimize total execution time and reduce overall communication cost for the entire simulation. This research introduces three algorithms to optimize the allocation by considering the spatial and communicational constraints: 1) an Integer Linear Programming (ILP) based algorithm from combinational optimization perspective; 2) a K-Means and Kernighan-Lin combined heuristic algorithm (K&K) integrating geometric and coordinate-free methods by merging local and global partitioning; 3) an automatic seeded region growing based geometric and local partitioning algorithm (ASRG). The performance and effectiveness of the three algorithms are compared based on different factors. Further, we adopt the K&K algorithm as the demonstrated algorithm for the experiment of dust model simulation with the non-hydrostatic mesoscale model (NMMdust) and compared the performance with the MPI default sequential allocation. The results demonstrate that K&K method significantly improves the simulation performance with better subdomain allocation. This method can also be adopted for other relevant atmospheric and numerical modeling.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere0152250
JournalPloS one
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General


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