Project ideas

    Version as of 23:14, 26 Jan 2020

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    This page describes projects related to GROMACS which are up for grabs by anyone wanting to contribute or do some research on one of  the proposed the scientific, HPC, or scientific topics.

    Rules of the game - how to join?


    [More content should come here in particular on: general information, policies, list of projects with description and mentor/contact info, contributors, etc.]


    Note that the content of this page should be considered a preliminary draft and it is currently being added as well as reviewied. If you find anything interesting feel free to send a mail to the developers' list ( or to Szilárd Páll (pszilard ATATAT kth DOTDOT se).



    Intel MIC support: implementing asymmetric offload mechanism

    Contact: Mikhail Plotnikov

    Description: In order to use Intel MIC (Xeon Phi) accelerators efficiently, an asynchronous task offloading to the accelerator is required - similar to the asynchronous execution model implemented with NVIDIA GPUs. This would involve implementing a heterogenous offload mechanism of accelerated short-range (non-bonded and bonded) force kernels. While simple offload mechanisms do exist for MIC, these lack the flexibility and performance required in GROMACS. The optimal solution is to implement a coarse, high-level, task-parallelization which separates particle-particle workload (bonded and non-bonded force calculations) the same way as PME "ranks" separate workload and enable execution on dedicated MPI ranks.

    For further details see the related feature requests: 1181 and 1187.

    Information on MIC heterogenous offload can be found on these slides.


    Explore usablity of ispc for SIMD kernels

    Contact: ???

    Description: The Intel ispc is an open-source compiler for a C-based SPMD programming language and compiles efficient code for SIMD units and Intel Mic. It would be interesting to port some of the GROMACS SIMD force kernels (e.g. group or Verlet scheme non-bonded or bonded) and see what advantages/disadvantages does this SPMD compiler provide.


    Explore usablity of OpenCL for CPU SIMD and GPU kernels

    Contact: ???

    Description: OpenCL is currently the only platform that offers the possiblity of having a common language and programming model with the ability to target a wide range of platforms from SIMD capable CPUs to accelerators to more exotic chips like the Adapteva Parallela. Hence, our aim is to enable the use of OpenCL in GROMACS by developing the required infrastructure (build system, "glue"/device management code, etc.) as well as experiment with porting compute kernels to various architectures. While it is known that OpenCL can in many cases not compete with a native optimization (e.g AVX for CPUs or CUDA for NVIDIA GPUs), having the infrastructure ready and being able to try out new optimizations or some promising hardware would be of great benefit.

    The work could start with setting up build system and general OpenCL device/data management infrastructure and by porting the current CUDA kernels which should be straightforward. Currently, the main platforms of interst are (non-exhaustive list, we're open for suggestions):

    • CUDA GPUs
    • AMD GPUs and APUs
    • Intel/AMD CPUs (SIMD acceleration: SSE/AVX)
    • Intel GPUs (why not :)
    • Samsung Exynos 5 / Cortex A5 with ARM Mali-T600 (used in the the Mont Blanc project's third gen machine)
    Page last modified 16:52, 12 Mar 2013 by pszilard