A decomposition approach for the scheduling of a steel plant production

Iiro Harjunkoski, Ignacio E. Grossmann*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

200 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper we present a decomposition strategy for solving large scheduling problems using mathematical programming methods. Instead of formulating one huge and unsolvable MILP problem, we propose a decomposition scheme that generates smaller programs that can often be solved to global optimality. The original problem is split into subproblems in a natural way using the special features of steel making and avoiding the need for expressing the highly complex rules as explicit constraints. We present a small illustrative example problem, and several real-world problems to demonstrate the capabilities of the proposed strategy, and the fact that the solutions typically lie within 1-3% of the global optimum.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1647-1660
Number of pages14
JournalComputers and Chemical Engineering
Issue number11-12
Publication statusPublished - 15 Nov 2001
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Disaggregation
  • Heuristics
  • Mixed Integer Programming
  • Scheduling
  • Steel making


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