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Solving large dense linear least squares problems on parallel distributed computers. Application to the Earth's gravity field computation.

Baboulin, Marc. Solving large dense linear least squares problems on parallel distributed computers. Application to the Earth's gravity field computation. PhD, Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse, 2006

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Official URL: http://ethesis.inp-toulouse.fr/archive/00000253/

Abstract

In this thesis, we present our research in high performance scientific computing for linear least squares. More precisely we are concerned with developing efficient parallel software that can solve very large dense linear least squares problems and with providing numerical tools that can assess the quality of the solution. This thesis is also a contribution to the GOCE3 mission that strives for a very accurate model of the Earth's gravity field. This satellite is scheduled for launch in 2007 and in this respect, our work represents a step in the definition of algorithms for the project. We present an overview of the numerical strategies that can be used for updating the solution with new observations coming from GOCE mesurements. Then we describe a parallel distributed solver that we implemented in order to be used in the CNES4 software package for orbit determination and gravity field computation. This solver compares well in terms of performance with the standard parallel libraries ScaLAPACK and PLAPACK on the operational platforms used in the space industry while saving about half the memory, thanks to taking into account the symmetry of the problem. In order to improve the scalability and the portability of our solver, we define a packed distributed format that is based on ScaLAPACK kernel routines. This approach is a significant improvement since there is no packed distributed format available for symmetric or triangular matrices in the existing dense parallel libraries. Examples are given for the Cholesky factorization and for the updating of a QR factorization. This format can easily be extended to other linear algebra calculations. This thesis also contains new results in the area of sensitivity analysis for linear least squares resulting from parameter estimation problems. Specifically we provide a closed formula, bounds of correct order of magnitude and also statistical estimates that enable us to evaluate the condition number of linear functionals of least squares solution. The choice between the different expressions will depend on the problem size and on the desired level of accuracy.

Item Type:PhD Thesis
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Institution: Université de Toulouse > Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse - INPT
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Research Director:
Giraud, Luc
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