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  • 11
    Publication Date: 2022-03-14
    Description: Primal heuristics play an important role in the solving of mixed integer programs (MIPs). They often provide good feasible solutions early and help to reduce the time needed to prove optimality. In this paper, we present a scheme for start heuristics that can be executed without previous knowledge of an LP solution or a previously found integer feasible solution. It uses global structures available within MIP solvers to iteratively fix integer variables and propagate these fixings. Thereby, fixings are determined based on the predicted impact they have on the subsequent domain propagation. If sufficiently many variables can be fixed that way, the resulting problem is solved first as an LP, and then as an auxiliary MIP if the rounded LP solution does not provide a feasible solution already. We present three primal heuristics that use this scheme based on different global structures. Our computational experiments on standard MIP test sets show that the proposed heuristics find solutions for about 60 % of the instances and by this, help to improve several performance measures for MIP solvers, including the primal integral and the average solving time.
    Language: English
    Type: article , doc-type:article
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  • 12
    Publication Date: 2022-03-11
    Description: The SCIP Optimization Suite provides a collection of software packages for mathematical optimization centered around the constraint integer programming framework SCIP. This paper discusses enhancements and extensions contained in version 8.0 of the SCIP Optimization Suite. Major updates in SCIP include improvements in symmetry handling and decomposition algorithms, new cutting planes, a new plugin type for cut selection, and a complete rework of the way nonlinear constraints are handled. Additionally, SCIP 8.0 now supports interfaces for Julia as well as Matlab. Further, UG now includes a unified framework to parallelize all solvers, a utility to analyze computational experiments has been added to GCG, dual solutions can be postsolved by PaPILO, new heuristics and presolving methods were added to SCIP-SDP, and additional problem classes and major performance improvements are available in SCIP-Jack.
    Language: English
    Type: reportzib , doc-type:preprint
    Format: application/pdf
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  • 13
    Publication Date: 2020-08-05
    Description: SAP's decision support systems for optimized supply network planning rely on mixed-integer programming as the core engine to compute optimal or near-optimal solutions. The modeling flexibility and the optimality guarantees provided by mixed-integer programming greatly aid the design of a robust and future-proof decision support system for a large and diverse customer base. In this paper we describe our coordinated efforts to ensure that the performance of the underlying solution algorithms matches the complexity of the large supply chain problems and tight time limits encountered in practice.
    Language: English
    Type: reportzib , doc-type:preprint
    Format: application/pdf
    Format: application/pdf
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  • 14
    Publication Date: 2020-08-05
    Description: 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.
    Language: English
    Type: reportzib , doc-type:preprint
    Format: application/pdf
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  • 15
    Publication Date: 2020-08-05
    Description: 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.
    Language: English
    Type: article , doc-type:article
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  • 16
    Publication Date: 2021-01-22
    Description: The SCIP Optimization Suite is a powerful collection of optimization software that consists of the branch-cut-and-price framework and mixed-integer programming solver SCIP, the linear programming solver SoPlex, the modeling language Zimpl, the parallelization framework UG, and the generic branch-cut-and-price solver GCG. Additionally, it features the extensions SCIP-Jack for solving Steiner tree problems, PolySCIP for solving multi-objective problems, and SCIP-SDP for solving mixed-integer semidefinite programs. The SCIP Optimization Suite has been continuously developed and has now reached version 4.0. The goal of this report is to present the recent changes to the collection. We not only describe the theoretical basis, but focus on implementation aspects and their computational consequences.
    Language: English
    Type: reportzib , doc-type:preprint
    Format: application/pdf
    Format: application/pdf
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  • 17
    Publication Date: 2020-08-05
    Description: Strong branching is an important component of most variable selection rules in branch-and-bound based mixed-integer linear programming solvers. It predicts the dual bounds of potential child nodes by solving auxiliary LPs and thereby helps to keep the branch-and-bound tree small. In this paper, we describe how these dual bound predictions can be improved by including domain propagation into strong branching. Computational experiments on standard MIP instances indicate that this is beneficial in three aspects: It helps to reduce the average number of LP iterations per strong branching call, the number of branch-and-bound nodes, and the overall solving time.
    Language: English
    Type: article , doc-type:article
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  • 18
    Publication Date: 2020-08-05
    Language: English
    Type: article , doc-type:article
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  • 19
    Publication Date: 2020-08-05
    Description: One of the essential components of a branch-and-bound based mixed-integer linear programming (MIP) solver is the branching rule. Strong branching is a method used by many state-of-the-art branching rules to select the variable to branch on. It precomputes the dual bounds of potential child nodes by solving auxiliary linear programs (LPs) and thereby helps to take good branching decisions that lead to a small search tree. In this paper, we describe how these dual bound predictions can be improved by including domain propagation into strong branching. Domain propagation is a technique MIP solvers usually apply at every node of the branch-and-bound tree to tighten the local domains of variables. Computational experiments on standard MIP instances indicate that our improved strong branching method significantly improves the quality of the predictions and causes almost no additional effort. For a full strong branching rule, we are able to obtain substantial reductions of the branch-and-bound tree size as well as the solving time. Moreover, the state-of-the-art hybrid branching rule can be improved this way as well. This paper extends previous work by the author published in the proceedings of the CPAIOR 2013.
    Language: English
    Type: article , doc-type:article
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  • 20
    Publication Date: 2020-08-05
    Description: This paper describes three presolving techniques for solving mixed integer programming problems (MIPs) that were implemented in the academic MIP solver SCIP. The task of presolving is to reduce the problem size and strengthen the formulation, mainly by eliminating redundant information and exploiting problem structures. The first method fixes continuous singleton columns and extends results known from duality fixing. The second analyzes and exploits pairwise dominance relations between variables, whereas the third detects isolated subproblems and solves them independently. The performance of the presented techniques is demonstrated on two MIP test sets. One contains all benchmark instances from the last three MIPLIB versions, while the other consists of real-world supply chain management problems. The computational results show that the combination of all three presolving techniques almost halves the solving time for the considered supply chain management problems. For the MIPLIB instances we obtain a speedup of 20 % on affected instances while not degrading the performance on the remaining problems.
    Language: English
    Type: article , doc-type:article
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