PhD defence G. (George) Chatzikonstantis


Prof. dr. C.I. de Zeeuw


Prof. dr. D. Soudris


Dr. C. Strydis

Tuesday 8 Dec 2020, 09:30 - 11:00
PhD defence
Spoken Language
Professor Andries Querido room
Education Center
Erasmus MC
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On Tuesday 8 December 2020, G. Chatzikonstantis will defend his PhD dissertation, entitled: ‘On Application Design for Manycore Processing Systems in the Domain of Neuroscience’.

The evolution of our understanding and mapping of the human brain has been accompanied by a steady increase in the processing power made available in manycore processors. In this Doctoral thesis, we investigate the impact that manycore processors can have in the domain of computational neuroscience, specifically from the viewpoint of high-detail neuromodelling. By identifying a lack of research efforts in high-performance, large-scale, detailed neuronal simulations, the thesis presents the development of a simulator rich ‘in biophysical detail in manycore x86-based processors. Furthermore, the simulator acts as a means to study how manycore processors have evolved in architecture and behaviour, as well as highlight their strengths and drawbacks, in an effort to understand the role that they can play in the landscape of high-performance neuromodelling.

The end product of this thesis is a simulator that constitutes an efficient solution for studying demanding neuronal models, in terms of both performance and energy. The thesis starts with a design that can simulate an average network of 50k neurons and 2million synapses in 40 minutes for every second of simulated brain activity; the final design on a modern, small cluster of manycore processors vastly improves on this design by simulating 2million neurons and 2billion synapses in under 10 minutes for every second of simulated brain activity.

Through the proposed simulator, we highlight how the significant wealth of neuromodelling parameters affects simulation in different manycore processors. We provide a clear map on matching the correct amount, and type, of hardware to different network simulation configurations. As such, we take an important step towards defining proper utilization of high-performance hardware in order to match simulation challenges imposed by the domain of computational neuroscience.

Due to corona, the PhD defences do not take place publicly in the usual way in the Senate Hall of the Professor Andries Querido Room. The candidates will defend their dissertation either in a small group or online.

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