On the Accelerated Convergence of Genetic Algorithm Using GPU Parallel Operations

On the Accelerated Convergence of Genetic Algorithm Using GPU Parallel Operations

Cheng-Chieh Li (Tunghai University, Taichung, Taiwan), Jung-Chun Liu (Tunghai University, Taichung, Taiwan), Chu-Hsing Lin (Tunghai University, Taichung, Taiwan) and Winston Lo (Tunghai University, Taichung, Taiwan)
Copyright: © 2015 |Pages: 17
DOI: 10.4018/IJSI.2015100101
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The genetic algorithm plays a very important role in many areas of applications. In this research, the authors propose to accelerate the evolution speed of the genetic algorithm by parallel computing, and optimize parallel genetic algorithms by methods such as the island model. The authors find that when the amount of population increases, the genetic algorithm tends to converge more rapidly into the global optimal solution; however, it also consumes greater amount of computation resources. To solve this problem, the authors take advantage of the many cores of GPUs to enhance computation efficiency and develop a parallel genetic algorithm for GPUs. Different from the usual genetic algorithm that uses one thread for computation of each chromosome, the parallel genetic algorithm using GPUs evokes large amount of threads simultaneously and allows the population to scale greatly. The large amount of the next generation population of chromosomes can be divided by a block method; and after independently operating in each block for a few generation, selection and crossover operations of chromosomes can be performed among blocks to greatly accelerate the speed to find the global optimal solution. Also, the travelling salesman problem (TSP) is used as the benchmark for performance comparison of the GPU and CPU; however, the authors did not perform algebraic optimization for TSP.
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1. Background

1.1. HAS Architecture

Inside conventional computing architecture, only one CPU, or a multi-core CPU handles all operations. To execute massive and high speed operations, lots of CPUs are required, resulting in increasing hardware cost and electric power consumption. The benefit of Heterogeneous System Architecture (HSA) that integrates CPUs and GPUs is that it selects operations of different properties inside an algorithm and sends them to CPUs or GPUs with better hardware architecture for these operations. Thus, we can not only implement optimal hardware architecture for specific algorithms but also execute operations in GPUs and CPUs in parallel to accelerate computations

1.2. Hardware Architecture of GPU

GPUs originally are hardware designed to handle graphics rendering, but in recent years GPU manufacturing companies, such as AMD and NVIDIA, start developing techniques to utilize the large amount of cores inside GPUs for computation. In this research, we adopt Kepler micro architecture developed by NVIDIA, in which the core unit is called as the Streaming Multiprocessor (SMX). Each SMX consists of 192 CUDA cores. As shown in Figure 1, each CUDA core can be treated as a thread processing unit. Each GPU chip has more than one SMX core, which explains the advantage of GPU for parallel computing. But since GPUs are limited by adopting Single instruction, multiple data (SIMD) (Garland, M., Le Grand, S., Nickolls, J., Anderson, J., Hardwick, J., Morton, S., Phillips, E., Zhang, Y., Volkov, V,2008; Nickolls, J., Buck, I., Garland, M., & Skadron, K,2008) architecture, they are suitable for handling operations of algorithms with data of high independence. For operations of algorithms with data of high dependence amid one another, the performance of GPUs may be lower than that of CPUs.

Figure 1.

SMX architecture

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