A multi-crossover and adaptive island based population algorithm for solving routing problems

Abstract

We propose a multi-crossover and adaptive island based population algorithm (MAIPA). This technique divides the entire population into subpopulations, or demes, each with a different crossover function, which can be switched according to the efficiency. In addition, MAIPA reverses the philosophy of conventional genetic algorithms. It gives priority to the autonomous improvement of the individuals (at the mutation phase), and introduces dynamism in the crossover probability. Each subpopulation begins with a very low value of crossover probability, and then varies with the change of the current generation number and the search performance on recent generations. This mechanism helps prevent premature convergence. In this research, the effectiveness of this technique is tested using three well-known routing problems, i.e., the traveling salesman problem (TSP), capacitated vehicle routing problem (CVRP), and vehicle routing problem with backhauls (VRPB). MAIPA proves to be better than a traditional island based genetic algorithm for all these three problems. © 2013 Journal of Zhejiang University Science Editorial Office and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.