Journal of Scheduling

, Volume 16, Issue 6, pp 605–628 | Cite as

A solution approach based on Benders decomposition for the preventive maintenance scheduling problem of a stochastic large-scale energy system

  • Richard Lusby
  • Laurent Flindt Muller
  • Bjørn Petersen


This paper describes a Benders decomposition-based framework for solving the large scale energy management problem that was posed for the ROADEF 2010 challenge. The problem was taken from the power industry and entailed scheduling the outage dates for a set of nuclear power plants, which need to be regularly taken down for refueling and maintenance, in such a way that the expected cost of meeting the power demand in a number of potential scenarios is minimized. We show that the problem structure naturally lends itself to Benders decomposition; however, not all constraints can be included in the mixed integer programming model. We present a two phase approach that first uses Benders decomposition to solve the linear programming relaxation of a relaxed version of the problem. In the second phase, integer solutions are enumerated and a procedure is applied to make them satisfy constraints not included in the relaxed problem. To cope with the size of the formulations arising in our approach we describe efficient preprocessing techniques to reduce the problem size and show how aggregation can be applied to each of the subproblems. Computational results on the test instances show that the procedure competes well on small instances of the problem, but runs into difficulty on larger ones. Unlike heuristic approaches, however, this methodology can be used to provide lower bounds on solution quality.


Power Plant Nuclear Power Plant Shutdown Curve Master Problem Bender Decomposition 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Richard Lusby
    • 1
  • Laurent Flindt Muller
    • 1
  • Bjørn Petersen
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Management EngineeringTechnical University of DenmarkKongens LyngbyDenmark

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