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A tabu search heuristic for the quay crane scheduling problem. (English) Zbl 1168.90468
Summary: This paper proposes a tabu search heuristic for the Quay Crane Scheduling Problem (QCSP), the problem of scheduling a fixed number of quay cranes in order to load and unload containers into and from a ship. The optimality criterion considered is the minimum completion time. Precedence and non-simultaneity constraints between tasks are taken into account. The former originate from the different kind of operations that each crane has to perform; the latter are needed in order to avoid interferences between the cranes. The QCSP is decomposed into a routing problem and a scheduling problem. The routing problem is solved by a tabu search heuristic, while a local search technique is used to generate the solution of the scheduling problem. This is done by minimizing the longest path length in a disjunctive graph. The effectiveness of our algorithm is assessed by comparing it to a branch-and-cut algorithm and to a Greedy Randomized Adaptive Search Procedure (GRASP).

90B35 Deterministic scheduling theory in operations research
90B40 Search theory
90C59 Approximation methods and heuristics in mathematical programming
Tabu search
Full Text: DOI
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