Combination of meta-heuristics and exact algorithms for solving set-covering type optimization problems
Muter, İbrahim and Birbil, Ş. İlker and Şahin, Güvenç (2009) Combination of meta-heuristics and exact algorithms for solving set-covering type optimization problems. (Accepted/In Press)
We propose a new generic framework for solving combinatorial optimization problems that can be modeled as a set-covering problem. The proposed algorithmic framework combines meta-heuristics with exact algorithms through a guiding mechanism based on diversification and intensification decisions. After presenting this generic framework, we extensively demonstrate its application to the vehicle routing problem with time windows. We then conduct a thorough computational study on a set of well-known test problems, where we show that the proposed approach not only finds solutions that are very close to the best-known solutions reported in the literature but also improves them. We finally set up an experimental design to analyze the effects of different parameters used in the proposed algorithm.
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