FPGA Hardware Acceleration of Monte Carlo Simulations for the Ising Model

Ortega-Zamorano, Francisco; Montemurro, Marcelo A.; Cannas, Sergio Alejandro; Jerez, José M. and Franco, Leonardo (2016). FPGA Hardware Acceleration of Monte Carlo Simulations for the Ising Model. IEEE Transactions on Parallel and Distributed Systems, 27(9) pp. 2618–2627.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1109/TPDS.2015.2505725


A two-dimensional Ising model with nearest-neighbors ferromagnetic interactions is implemented in a Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) board. Extensive Monte Carlo simulations were carried out using an efficient hardware representation of individual spins and a combined global-local LFSR random number generator. Consistent results regarding the descriptive properties of magnetic systems, like energy, magnetization and susceptibility are obtained while a speed-up factor of approximately six times is achieved in comparison to previous FPGA-based published works and almost 104 times in comparison to a standard CPU simulation. A detailed description of the logic design used is given together with a careful analysis of the quality of the random number generator used. The obtained results confirm the potential of FPGAs for analyzing the statistical mechanics of magnetic systems.

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