Revisiting local branching with a machine learning lens

Finding high-quality solutions to mixed-integer linear programming problems (MILPs) is of great importance for many practical applications. In this respect, the refinement heuristic local branching (LB) has been proposed to produce improving solutions and has been highly influential for the development of local search methods in MILP. The algorithm iteratively explores a sequence of solution … Read more

Using Multiple Reference Vectors and Objective Scaling in the Feasibility Pump

The Feasibility Pump (FP) is one of the best-known primal heuristics for mixed-integer programming (MIP): more than 15 papers suggested various modifications of all of its steps. So far, no variant considered information across multiple iterations, but all instead maintained the principle to optimize towards a single reference integer point. In this paper, we evaluate … Read more

Learning to Use Local Cuts

An essential component in modern solvers for mixed-integer (linear) programs (MIPs) is the separation of additional inequalities (cutting planes) to tighten the linear programming relaxation. Various algorithmic decisions are necessary when integrating cutting plane methods into a branch-and-bound (B&B) solver as there is always the trade-off between the efficiency of the cuts and their costs, … Read more

PyEPO: A PyTorch-based End-to-End Predict-then-Optimize Library for Linear and Integer Programming

In deterministic optimization, it is typically assumed that all parameters of the problem are fixed and known. In practice, however, some parameters may be a priori unknown but can be estimated from historical data. A typical predict-then-optimize approach separates predictions and optimization into two stages. Recently, end-to-end predict-then-optimize has become an attractive alternative. In this … Read more

Logic-based Benders decomposition with a partial assignment acceleration technique for avionics scheduling

Pre-runtime scheduling of large-scale electronic systems, as those in modern aircraft, can be computationally challenging. In this paper, we study a distributed integrated modular avionic system of practical relevance where the scheduling includes to assign communication messages to time slots and to sequence tasks on modules. For this problem, the challenge is the huge number … Read more

Continuous Covering on Networks: Strong Mixed Integer Programming Formulations

Covering problems are well-studied in the domain of Operations Research, and, more specifically, in Location Science. When the location space is a network, the most frequent assumption is to consider the candidate facility locations, the points to be covered, or both, to be discrete sets. In this work, we study the set-covering location problem when … Read more

Ensemble Methods for Robust Support Vector Machines using Integer Programming

In this work we study binary classification problems where we assume that our training data is subject to uncertainty, i.e. the precise data points are not known. To tackle this issue in the field of robust machine learning the aim is to develop models which are robust against small perturbations in the training data. We … Read more

Fleet & tail assignment under uncertainty

Airlines solve many different optimization problems and combine the resulting solutions to ensure smooth, minimum-cost operations. Crucial problems are the Fleet Assignment, which assigns aircraft types to flights of a given schedule, and the Tail Assignment, which determines individual flight sequences to be performed by single aircraft. In order to find a cost-optimal solution, many … Read more

Shattering Inequalities for Learning Optimal Decision Trees

Recently, mixed-integer programming (MIP) techniques have been applied to learn optimal decision trees. Empirical research has shown that optimal trees typically have better out-of-sample performance than heuristic approaches such as CART. However, the underlying MIP formulations often suffer from slow runtimes, due to weak linear programming (LP) relaxations. In this paper, we first propose a … Read more

An MISOCP-Based Decomposition Approach for the Unit Commitment Problem with AC Power Flows

Unit Commitment (UC) and Optimal Power Flow (OPF) are two fundamental problems in short-term electric power systems planning that are traditionally solved sequentially. The state-of-the-art mostly uses a direct current flow approximation of the power flow equations in the UC-level and the generator commitments obtained are sent as input to the OPF-level. However, such an … Read more