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Generating quadratic assignment test problems with known optimal permutations


The quadratic assignment problem (QAP) is a well-known combinatorial optimization problem of which the travelling-salesman problem is a special case. Although the QAP has been extensively studied during the past three decades, this problem remains very hard to solve. Problems of sizes greater than 15 are generally impractical to solve. For this reason, many heuristics have been developed. However, in the literature, there is a lack of test problems with known optimal solutions for evaluating heuristic algorithms. Only recently Paulubetskis proposed a method to generate test problems with known optimal solutions for a special type of QAP. This paper concerns the generation of test problems for the QAP with known optimal permutations. We generalize the result of Palubetskis and provide test-problem generators for more general types of QAPs. The test-problem generators proposed are easy to implement and were also tested on several well-known heuristic algorithms for the QAP. Computatinal results indicate that the test problems generated can be used to test the effectiveness of heuristic algorithms for the QAP. Comparison with Palubetskis' procedure was made, showing the superiority of the new test-problem generators. Three illustrative test problems of different types are also provided in an appendix, together with the optimal permutations and the optimal objective function values.

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Li, Y., Pardalos, P.M. Generating quadratic assignment test problems with known optimal permutations. Comput Optim Applic 1, 163–184 (1992).

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  • test problems
  • quadratic assignment
  • heuristics
  • combinatorial optimization