A divide and conquer strategy for scaling weather simulations with multiple regions of interest.

Preeti Malakar, Thomas George, Sameer Kumar, Rashmi Mittal, Vijay Natarajan, Yogish Sabharwal, Vaibhav Saxena and Sathish S. Vadhiyar.
SC 2012: Proc. IEEE/ACM Supercomputing, 2012, 37.1-37.11.


Accurate and timely prediction of weather phenomena, such as hurricanes and flash floods, require high-fidelity compute intensive simulations of multiple finer regions of interest within a coarse simulation domain. Current weather applications execute these nested simulations sequentially using all the available processors, which is sub-optimal due to their sublinear scalability. In this work, we present a strategy for parallel execution of multiple nested domain simulations based on partitioning the 2-D processor grid into disjoint rectangular regions associated with each domain. We propose a novel combination of performance prediction, processor allocation methods and topology-aware mapping of the regions on torus interconnects. Experiments on IBM Blue Gene systems using WRF show that the proposed strategies result in performance improvement of up to 33% with topology-oblivious mapping and up to additional 7% with topology-aware mapping over the default sequential strategy