Integrated Planning for Public Transportation
Project "Decomposition Algorithms for Multistage Optimization Problems" within the DFG research group "Integrated Planning for Public Transportation".
Public Transportation is an essential component of traffic. Its supply is documented in line plans, timetables, vehicle schedules and (drivers') rosters. In practice, these plans are usually made sequentially. Their qualities are assessed individually, an overall a priori evaluation does not take place.
The DFG research group FOR2083 "Integrated Planning in Public Transportation" is borne by the vision to replace the sequential process by an integrated planning in order to be able to plan a customer-friendly and economic public transportation; methods which allow such an integrated planning shall be developed.
This planning process is a complex and very large multi-stage optimization problem. Single stages can be modeled as integer programs, though not every model is equally suitable. For the most successful, in terms of their sizes exactly solvable instances, decomposition algorithms are needed. From today's point of view, it is hard to imagine that an integrated planning of multiple planning stages in the design process of public transportation will go without such algorithms.
As a project within this research group, we deal with the investigation of the structure of multi-stage optimization problems, their modeling as integer programs, and the development and experimental investigation of decomposition algorithms to solve them. The planning process in public transportation here serves as a prototypical application on which the suitability of the developed theory and algorithms shall be validated.