Distributed Constraint Optimization with Structured Resource Constraints

Distributed constraint optimization (DCOP) provides a framework for coordinated decision making by a team of agents. Often, during the decision making, capacity constraints on agents' resource consumption must be taken into account. To address such scenarios, an extension of DCOP- Resource Constrained DCOP- has been proposed. However, certain type of resources have an additional structure associated with them and exploiting it can result in more efficient algorithms than possible with a general framework. An example of these are distribution networks, where the flow of a commodity from sources to sinks is limited by the flow capacity of edges. We present a new model of structured resource constraints that exploits the acyclicity and the flow conservation property of distribution networks. We show how this model can be used in efficient algorithms for finding the optimal flow configuration in distribution networks, an essential problem in managing power distribution networks. Experiments demonstrate the efficiency and scalability of our approach on publicly available benchmarks and compare favorably against a specialized solver for this task. Our results extend significantly the effectiveness of distributed constraint optimization for practical multi-agent settings.

Presented at:
International Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multiagent Systems (AAMAS)

 Record created 2014-06-05, last modified 2018-09-13

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