Polyhedral Aspects of Self-Avoiding Walks

In this paper, we study self-avoiding walks of a given length on a graph. We consider a formulation of this problem as a binary linear program. We analyze the polyhedral structure of the underlying polytope and describe valid inequalities. Proofs for their facial properties for certain special cases are given. In a variation of this problem one is interested in optimal configurations, where an energy function measures the benefit if certain path elements are placed on adjacent vertices of the graph. The most prominent application of this problem is the protein folding problem in biochemistry. On a set of selected instances, we demonstrate the computational merits of our approach.


ZIB-Report 11-11



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