The Bienstock Zuckerberg Algorithm for the Rolling Stock Rotation Problem

  • The design of rolling stock rotations is an important task in large-scale railway planning. This so-called rolling stock rotation problem (RSRP) is usually tackled using an integer programming approach. Markus Reuther did so in his dissertation [15] for the ICE railway network of DB ("Deutsche Bahn"). Due to the size of the network and the complexity of further technical requirements, the resulting integer problems tend to become very large and computationally involved. In this thesis, we tackle the linear programming relaxation of the RSRP integer program. We will do so by applying a modified version of an algorithm recently proposed by Dan Bienstock and Mark Zuckerberg [2] for the precedence constrained production scheduling problem that arises in open pit mine scheduling. This problem contains a large number of "easy" constraints and a relatively small number of "hard" constraints. We will see that a similar problem structure can also be found in the RSRP. The Bienstock-Zuckerberg algorithm relies on applying Lagrangian relaxation to the hard constraints as well as on partitioning the variable set. We propose three different partition schemes which try to exploit the specific problem structure of the RSRP. Furthermore, we will discuss the influence of primal degeneracy on the algorithm's performance, as well as possible merits of perturbating the right-hand side of the constraint matrix. We provide computational results to assess the performance of those approaches.

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Author:Ricardo Euler
Document Type:Master's Thesis
Granting Institution:Freie Universität Berlin
Advisor:Ralf Borndörfer
Year of first publication:2018