An effective data parallel self‐starting explicit methodology for computational structural dynamics on the connection machine CM‐5

Raju R. Namburu, David A. Turner, Kumar K. Tamma

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11 Scopus citations


This paper discusses the implementation aspects and our experiences towards a data parallel explicit self‐starting finite element transient methodology with emphasis on the Connection Machine (CM‐5) for linear and non‐linear computational structural dynamic applications involving structured and unstructured grids. The parallel implementation criteria that influence the efficiency of an algorithm include the amount of communication, communication routing, and load balancing. To provide simplicity, high level of accuracy, and to retain the generality of the finite element implementation for both linear and non‐linear transient explicit problems on a data parallel computer which permit optimum amount of communications, we implemented the present self‐starting dynamic formulations (in comparison to the traditional approaches) based on nodal displacements, nodal velocities, and elemental stresses on the CM‐5. Data parallel language CMFortran is employed with virtual processor constructs and with:SERIAL and:PARALLEL layout directives for arrays. The communications via the present approach involve only one gather operation (extraction of element nodal displacements or velocities from global displacement vector) and one scatter operation (dispersion of element forces onto global force vector) for each time step. These gather and scatter operations are implemented using the Connection Machine Scientific Software Library communication primitives for both structured and unstructured finite element meshes. The implementation aspects of the present self‐starting formulations for linear and elastoplastic applications on serial and data parallel machines are discussed. Numerical test models for linear and non‐linear one‐dimensional applications and a two‐dimensional unstructured finite element mesh are then illustrated and their performance studies are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3211-3226
Number of pages16
JournalInternational Journal for Numerical Methods in Engineering
Issue number19
StatePublished - Oct 15 1995


  • data parallel computer
  • explicit time integration
  • finite element method
  • linear and non‐linear problems
  • structural dynamics


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