Newmark local time stepping on high-performance computing architectures

Max Rietmann, Marcus Grote, Daniel Peter, Olaf Schenk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


In multi-scale complex media, finite element meshes often require areas of local refinement, creating small elements that can dramatically reduce the global time-step for wave-propagation problems due to the CFL condition. Local time stepping (LTS) algorithms allow an explicit time-stepping scheme to adapt the time-step to the element size, allowing near-optimal time-steps everywhere in the mesh. We develop an efficient multilevel LTS-Newmark scheme and implement it in a widely used continuous finite element seismic wave-propagation package. In particular, we extend the standard LTS formulation with adaptations to continuous finite element methods that can be implemented very efficiently with very strong element-size contrasts (more than 100×). Capable of running on large CPU and GPU clusters, we present both synthetic validation examples and large scale, realistic application examples to demonstrate the performance and applicability of the method and implementation on thousands of CPU cores and hundreds of GPUs.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)308-326
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Computational Physics
StatePublished - Nov 25 2016


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