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Paper: VisIVO: A Library and Integrated Tools for Large Astrophysical Dataset Exploration
Volume: 461, Astronomical Data Analysis Software and Systems XXI
Page: 505
Authors: Becciani, U.; Costa, A.; Ersotelos, N.; Krokos, M.; Massimino, P.; Petta, C.; Vitello, F.
Abstract: VisIVO provides an integrated suite of tools and services that can be used in many scientific fields. VisIVO development starts in the Virtual Observatory framework. VisIVO allows users to visualize meaningfully highly-complex, large-scale datasets and create movies of these visualizations based on distributed infrastructures. VisIVO supports high-performance, multi-dimensional visualization of large-scale astrophysical datasets. Users can rapidly obtain meaningful visualizations while preserving full and intuitive control of the relevant parameters. VisIVO consists of VisIVO Desktop - a stand-alone application for interactive visualization on standard PCs, VisIVO Server - a platform for high performance visualization, VisIVO Web - a custom designed web portal, VisIVOSmartphone - an application to exploit the VisIVO Server functionality and the latest VisIVO features: VisIVO Library allows a job running on a computational system (grid, HPC, etc.) to produce movies directly with the code internal data arrays without the need to produce intermediate files. This is particularly important when running on large computational facilities, where the user wants to have a look at the results during the data production phase. For example, in grid computing facilities, images can be produced directly in the grid catalogue while the user code is running in a system that cannot be directly accessed by the user (a worker node). The deployment of VisIVO on the DG and gLite is carried out with the support of EDGI and EGI-Inspire projects. Depending on the structure and size of datasets under consideration, the data exploration process could take several hours of CPU for creating customized views and the production of movies could potentially last several days. For this reason an MPI parallel version of VisIVO could play a fundamental role in increasing performance, e.g. it could be automatically deployed on nodes that are MPI aware. A central concept in our development is thus to produce unified code that can run either on serial nodes or in parallel by using HPC oriented grid nodes. Another important aspect, to obtain as high performance as possible, is the integration of VisIVO processes with grid nodes where GPUs are available. We have selected CUDA for implementing a range of computationally heavy modules. VisIVO is supported by EGI-Inspire, EDGI and SCI-BUS projects.
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