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A Levy flight-based grey wolf optimizer combined with back-propagation algorithm for neural network training


In the present study, a new algorithm is developed for neural network training by combining a gradient-based and a meta-heuristic algorithm. The new algorithm benefits from simultaneous local and global search, eliminating the problem of getting stuck in local optimum. For this purpose, first the global search ability of the grey wolf optimizer (GWO) is improved with the Levy flight, a random walk in which the jump size follows the Levy distribution, which results in a more efficient global search in the search space thanks to the long jumps. Then, this improved algorithm is combined with back propagation (BP) to use the advantages of enhanced global search ability of GWO and local search ability of BP algorithm in training neural network. The performance of the proposed algorithm has been evaluated by comparing it against a number of well-known meta-heuristic algorithms using twelve classification and function-approximation datasets.

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Correspondence to Shima Amirsadri.

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First author (Shima Amirsadri) declares that she has no conflict of interest. Second author (Seyed Jalaleddin Mousavirad) declares that he has no conflict of interest. Third author (Hossein Ebrahimpour-Komleh) declares that he has no conflict of interest.

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Amirsadri, S., Mousavirad, S.J. & Ebrahimpour-Komleh, H. A Levy flight-based grey wolf optimizer combined with back-propagation algorithm for neural network training. Neural Comput & Applic 30, 3707–3720 (2018).

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  • Grey wolf optimizer
  • Multilayer perceptron
  • Neural network training
  • Learning
  • Levy flight
  • Back-propagation algorithm