An Improved Version of Tabu Search for Irregular Cutting Problems
The two-dimensional cutting problem consists of cutting a set of pieces from a sheet of material in order to minimize a waste. The general problem is NP-hard in strong sense. Thus only approximate polynomial algorithms are useful for standard instances of the problem. For one of the most complex problems in this area - the two-dimensional irregular cutting problem a few algorithms of this type have been proposed [2,1,6]. The problem issue considered in the algorithms is constrained to the sub-class in which the elements of arbitrary shapes are to be placed in or cut from the rectangular area, whose one dimension is fixed and the other is to be minimized. The algorithms contain some idea from the artificial intelligence area, make use of the graph theory and are based on the observation of the manual layout generation process as well. Their scheme is rather rigid and hard to adapt for use with different sets of element’s shapes. Also the issue of rectangularity of allocation area is very hard to overcome in those algorithms. Tests made for some algorithms  and the results obtained led us through new methods investigation to tabu search approach . The first application of the tabu search for the problem  though based on rather simple idea gave very interesting results. Some new elements of the method will be described it this paper.
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