Combining probabilistic algorithms, Constraint Programming and Lagrangian Relaxation to solve the Vehicle Routing Problem
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- Guimarans, D., Herrero, R., Riera, D. et al. Ann Math Artif Intell (2011) 62: 299. doi:10.1007/s10472-011-9261-y
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This paper presents an original hybrid approach to solve the Capacitated Vehicle Routing Problem (CVRP). The approach combines a Probabilistic Algorithm with Constraint Programming (CP) and Lagrangian Relaxation (LR). After introducing the CVRP and reviewing the existing literature on the topic, the paper proposes an approach based on a probabilistic Variable Neighbourhood Search (VNS) algorithm. Given a CVRP instance, this algorithm uses a randomized version of the classical Clarke and Wright Savings constructive heuristic to generate a starting solution. This starting solution is then improved through a local search process which combines: (a) LR to optimise each individual route, and (b) CP to quickly verify the feasibility of new proposed solutions. The efficiency of our approach is analysed after testing some well-known CVRP benchmarks. Benefits of our hybrid approach over already existing approaches are also discussed. In particular, the potential flexibility of our methodology is highlighted.