Numerical Methods Qualification Exam Problems and Solutions (University of Maryland)/August 2003

Problem 3

 Let $A,B\in R^{n\times n}\!\,$ be symmetric and positive definite matrices, and let $b\in R^{n}\!\,$ . Consider the quadratic function $Q(x)={\frac {1}{2}}x^{T}Ax-x^{T}b\!\,$ for $x\in R^{n}\!\,$ and a descent method to approximate the solution of $Ax=b\!\,$ : $x_{k+1}=x_{k}+\alpha _{k}d_{k}\!\,$ Problem 3a

 Define the concept of steepest descent $d_{k}\!\,$ and show how to compute the optimal stepsize $\alpha _{k}\!\,$ Descent Direction

$\nabla Q(x_{k})\cdot d_{k}<0\!\,$

Optimal step size

Choose $\alpha _{k}\!\,$  such that $Q(x_{k}+\alpha _{k}d_{k})\!\,$  is minimized i.e.

$\alpha _{k}:\min _{\alpha _{k}}Q(x_{k}+\alpha _{k}d_{k})\!\,$

$Q(x_{k}+\alpha _{k}d_{k})=\langle x_{k}+\alpha _{k}d_{k},Ax_{k}+\alpha _{k}Ad_{k}\rangle -\langle x_{k}+\alpha _{k}d_{k},b\rangle \!\,$

${\frac {d}{d\alpha }}Q(x_{k}+\alpha _{k}d_{k})=\langle Ad_{k},x_{k}\rangle +\alpha _{k}\langle Ad_{k},d_{k}\rangle -\langle d_{k},b\rangle \!\,$

Setting the above expression equal to zero gives the optimal $\alpha _{k}\!\,$ :

$\alpha _{k}={\frac {\langle d_{k},b-Ax_{k}\rangle }{\langle Ad_{k},d_{k}\rangle }}\!\,$

Note that since $A\!\,$  is symmetric

$\langle d_{k},Ax_{k}\rangle =\langle Ad_{k},x_{k}\rangle \!\,$

Problem 3b

 Formulate the steepest descent (or gradient method) method and write a pseudocode which implements it.

Solution 3b

Note that $d_{k}=-\nabla Q(x_{k})=b-Ax_{k}=r_{k}\!\,$ . Then the minimal $\alpha _{k}\!\,$  is given by ${\frac {\langle r_{k},r_{k}\rangle }{\langle r_{k},r_{k}\rangle _{A}}}\!\,$

Given $x_{0}\in R^{n}\!\,$

For $k=0,1,2,\ldots \!\,$
{\begin{aligned}r_{k}&=b-Ax_{k}\\&{\mbox{If }}r_{k}=0,{\mbox{ then quit }}\\d_{k}&=r_{k}\\\alpha _{k}&={\frac {\langle r_{k},r_{k}\rangle }{\langle r_{k},r_{k}\rangle _{A}}}\\x_{k+1}&=x_{k}+\alpha _{k}d_{k}\end{aligned}}

Problem 3c

 Let $B^{-1}\!\,$ be a preconditioner of $A\!\,$ . Show how to modify the steepest descent method to work for $B^{-1}Ax=B^{-1}b\!\,$ and write a pseudocode. Note that $B^{-1}A\!\,$ may not be symmetric. (Hint: proceed as with the conjugate gradient method).

Solution 3

Since $B\!\,$  is symmetric, positive definite, $B=E^{T}E\!\,$  where $E\!\,$  is upper triangular (Cholesky Factorization).

Then $B^{-1}=E^{-1}E^{-T}\!\,$

Hence,

{\begin{aligned}B^{-1}Ax&=B^{-1}b\\E^{-1}E^{-T}Ax&=E^{-1}E^{-T}b\\E^{-T}Ax&=E^{-T}b\\\underbrace {E^{-T}AE^{-1}} _{\tilde {A}}\underbrace {Ex} _{\tilde {x}}&=\underbrace {E^{-T}b} _{\tilde {b}}\end{aligned}}\!\,

${\tilde {A}}\!\,$  is symmetric:

$(E^{-T}AE^{-1})^{T}=E^{-T}AE^{-1}\!\,$  since $A\!\,$  symmetric

${\tilde {A}}\!\,$  is positive definite:

$x^{T}E^{-T}AE^{-1}x=(E^{-1}x)^{T}A(E^{-1}x)>0\!\,$  since $A\!\,$  positive definite

Pseudocode

Given $x_{0}\in R^{n}\!\,$

For $k=0,1,2,\ldots \!\,$
{\begin{aligned}{\tilde {x_{k}}}&=Ex_{k}\\r_{k}&={\tilde {b}}-{\tilde {A}}{\tilde {x_{k}}}\\&{\mbox{If }}r_{k}=0,{\mbox{ then quit }}\\d_{k}&=r_{k}\\\alpha _{k}&={\frac {\langle r_{k},r_{k}\rangle }{\langle r_{k},r_{k}\rangle _{\tilde {A}}}}\\x_{k+1}&=x_{k}+\alpha _{k}d_{k}\end{aligned}}