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The Steiner tree problem in graphs is a classical problem that commonly arises in practical applications as one of many variants. While often a strong relationship between different Steiner tree problem variants can be observed, solution approaches employed so far have been prevalently problem-specific. In contrast, this paper introduces a general-purpose solver that can be used to solve both the classical Steiner tree problem and many of its variants without modification. This versatility is achieved by transforming various problem variants into a general form and solving them by using a state-of-the-art MIP-framework. The result is a high-performance solver that can be employed in massively parallel environments and is capable of solving previously unsolved instances.

The concept of reduction has frequently distinguished itself as a pivotal ingredient of exact solving approaches for the Steiner tree problem in graphs. In this paper we broaden the focus and consider reduction techniques for three Steiner problem variants that have been extensively discussed in the literature and entail various practical applications: The prize-collecting Steiner tree problem, the rooted prize-collecting Steiner tree problem and the maximum-weight connected subgraph problem.
By introducing and subsequently deploying numerous new reduction methods, we are able to drastically decrease the size of a large number of benchmark instances, already solving more than 90 percent of them to optimality. Furthermore, we demonstrate the impact of these techniques on exact solving, using the example of the state-of-the-art Steiner problem solver SCIP-Jack.

SCIP is a solver for a wide variety of mathematical optimization problems. It is written in C and extendable due to its plug-in based design. However, dealing with all C specifics when extending SCIP can be detrimental to development and testing of new ideas. This paper attempts to provide a remedy by introducing PySCIPOpt, a Python interface to SCIP that enables users to write new SCIP code entirely in Python. We demonstrate how to intuitively model mixed-integer linear and quadratic optimization problems and moreover provide examples on how new Python plug-ins can be added to SCIP.

Transformations of Steiner tree problem variants have been frequently discussed in the literature. Besides allowing to easily transfer complexity results, they constitute a central pillar of exact state-of-the-art solvers for well-known variants such as the Steiner tree problem in graphs. In this paper transformations for both the prize-collecting Steiner tree problem and the maximum-weight connected subgraph problem to the Steiner arborescence problem are introduced for the first time. Furthermore, we demonstrate the considerable implications for practical solving approaches, including the computation of strong upper and lower bounds.

The Steiner tree problem in graphs is a classical problem that commonly arises in practical applications as one of many variants. While often a strong relationship between different Steiner tree problem variants can be observed, solution approaches employed so far have been prevalently problem specific. In contrast, this paper introduces a general purpose solver that can be used to solve both the classical Steiner tree problem and many of its variants without modification. This is achieved by transforming various problem variants into a general form and solving them using a state-of-the-art MIP-framework. The result is a high-performance solver that can be employed in massively parallel environments and is capable of solving previously unsolved instances.

Generalized preprocessing techniques for Steiner tree and maximum-weight connected subgraph problems
(2017)

This article introduces new preprocessing techniques for the Steiner tree problem in graphs and one of its most popular relatives, the maximum-weight connected subgraph problem. Several of the techniques generalize previous results from the literature.
The correctness of the new methods is shown, but also their NP-hardness is demonstrated. Despite this pessimistic worst-case complexity, several relaxations are discussed that are expected to allow for a strong practical efficiency of these techniques in strengthening both exact and heuristic solving approaches.

Transformations of Steiner tree problem variants have been frequently discussed in the
literature. Besides allowing to easily transfer complexity results, they constitute a cen-
tral pillar of exact state-of-the-art solvers for well-known variants such as the Steiner tree
problem in graphs. In this paper transformations for both the prize-collecting Steiner tree
problem and the maximum-weight connected subgraph problem to the Steiner arborescence
problem are introduced for the first time. Furthermore, we demonstrate the considerable
implications for practical solving approaches, including the computation of strong upper
and lower bounds.