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Evolutionary Search Techniques to Solve Set Covering Problems

Authors: Darwin Gouwanda, S. G. Ponnambalam


Set covering problem is a classical problem in computer science and complexity theory. It has many applications, such as airline crew scheduling problem, facilities location problem, vehicle routing, assignment problem, etc. In this paper, three different techniques are applied to solve set covering problem. Firstly, a mathematical model of set covering problem is introduced and solved by using optimization solver, LINGO. Secondly, the Genetic Algorithm Toolbox available in MATLAB is used to solve set covering problem. And lastly, an ant colony optimization method is programmed in MATLAB programming language. Results obtained from these methods are presented in tables. In order to assess the performance of the techniques used in this project, the benchmark problems available in open literature are used.

Keywords: Genetic Algorithm, set covering problem, LINGO, ant colony optimization

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