Dynamic load-balancing for parallel particle simulations: from motivation to application

December 11, 2020 @ 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Godehard Sutmann


  • Rene Halver[1]
  • Stephan Schulz[1][2]
  • Godehard Sutmann[1][2]
[1] Julich Supercomputing Centre, Forschungszentrum Julich, Germany
[2] Interdisciplinary Centre for Advanced Materials Simulation (ICAMS), University of Bochum, Germany


Online event. Programme and registration available through the CECAM website for the event at https://www.cecam.org/workshop-details/1021

Scalability of parallel applications depends on a number of characteristics, among which is efficient communication, equal distribution of work or efficient data lay-out. Especially for methods based on domain decomposition, as it is standard for, e.g., molecular dynamics, dissipative particle dynamics or particle-in-cell methods, unequal load is to be expected for cases where particles are not distributed homogeneously, different costs of interaction calculations are present or heterogeneous architectures are invoked, to name a few. For these scenarios the code has to decide how to redistribute the work among processes according to a work sharing protocol or to dynamically adjust computational domains, to balance the workload.

The seminar will provide an overview about motivation, ideas for various methods and implementations on the level of tensor product decomposition, staggered grids, non-homogeneous mesh decomposition and a recently developed phase field approach. An implementation of several methods into the load balancing library ALL, which has been developed in the Centre of Excellence E-CAM, is presented. A use case is shown for the Materials Point Method (MPM), which is an Euler-Lagrange method for materials simulations on the macroscopic level, solving continuous materials equations.

The seminar is organised in three main parts:

  1. Overview of Load Balancing
  2. The ALL Load Balancing Library
  3. Balancing the Materials Point Method with ALL

The event will start at 14:00 CET on the 11th December 2020, and is expected to last 2h. It will run online via Zoom for registered participants, and it will be live streamed via YouTube at https://youtu.be/-LCDEnYoFiQ.