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Journal Articles INFORMS Journal on Computing Year : 2024

The Continuous Time-Resource Trade-off Scheduling Problem with Time Windows


We introduce a variant of the cumulative scheduling problem (CuSP) characterized by continuous modes, time windows, and a criterion that involves safety margin maximization. The study of this variant is motivated by the Geospatial based Environment for Optimisation Systems Addressing Fire Emergencies Horizon 2020 Project, which is devoted to the design of evacuation plans in the face of natural disasters and more specifically, wildfire. People and goods have to be transferred from endangered places to safe places, and evacuation planning consists of scheduling evacuee moves along precomputed paths under arc capacities and deadlines. The resulting model is relevant in other contexts, such as project or industrial process scheduling. We consider here several formulations of the continuous time-resource trade-off scheduling problem (CTRTP-TW) with a safety maximization objective. We establish a complete complexity characterization distinguishing polynomial and NP-hard special cases depending on key parameters. We show that the problem with fixed sequencing (i.e., with predetermined overlap or precedence relations between activities) is convex. We then show that the preemptive variant is polynomial, and we propose lower and upper bounds based on this relaxation. A flow-based mixed-integer linear programming formulation is presented, from which a branch-and-cut exact method and an insertion heuristic are derived. An exact dedicated branch-and-bound algorithm is also designed. Extensive computational experiments are carried out to compare the different approaches on evacuation planning instances and on general CTRTP-TW instances. The experiments also show the interest of the continuous model compared with a previously proposed discrete approximation. History: Accepted by Andrea Lodi, Area Editor for Design & Analysis of Algorithms—Discrete. Funding: This work was funded by the Horizon 2020 Marie Skłodowska-Curie Research and Innovation Staff Exchange European Project 691161 GEO-SAFE (Geospatial based Environment for Optimisation Systems Addressing Fire Emergencie). This work has also been supported by ANITI, the Artificial and Natural Intelligence Toulouse Institute. Supplemental Material: The software that supports the findings of this study is available within the paper and its Supplemental Information ( ) as well as from the IJOC GitHub software repository ( ). The complete IJOC Software and Data Repository is available at .
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hal-04610399 , version 1 (13-06-2024)



Christian Artigues, Emmanuel Hébrard, Alain Quilliot, Hélène Toussaint. The Continuous Time-Resource Trade-off Scheduling Problem with Time Windows. INFORMS Journal on Computing, 2024, ⟨10.1287/ijoc.2022.0142⟩. ⟨hal-04610399⟩
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