An experimental analysis of evolutionary heuristics for the biobjective traveling purchaser problem


Given a set of markets and a set of products to be purchased on those markets, the Biobjective Traveling Purchaser Problem (2TPP) consists in determining a route through a subset of markets to collect all products, minimizing the travel distance and the purchasing cost simultaneously. As its single objective version, the 2TPP is an NP-hard Combinatorial Optimization problem. Only one exact algorithm exists that can solve instances up to 100 markets and 200 products and one heuristic approach that can solve instances up to 500 markets and 200 products. Since the Transgenetic Algorithms (TAs) approach has shown to be very effective for the single objective version of the investigated problem, this paper examines the application of these algorithms to the 2TPP. TAs are evolutionary algorithms based on the endosymbiotic evolution and other interactions of the intracellular flow interactions. This paper has three main purposes: the first is the investigation of the viability of Multiobjective TAs to deal with the 2TPP, the second is to determine which characteristics are important for the hybridization between TAs and multiobjective evolutionary frameworks and the last is to compare the ability of multiobjective algorithms based only on Pareto dominance with those based on both decomposition and Pareto dominance to deal with the 2TPP. Two novel Transgenetic Multiobjective Algorithms are proposed. One is derived from the NSGA-II framework, named NSTA, and the other is derived from the MOEA/D framework, named MOTA/D. To analyze the performance of the proposed algorithms, they are compared with their classical counterparts. It is also the first time that NSGA-II and MOEA/D are applied to solve the 2TPP. The methods are validated in 365 uncapacitated instances of the TPPLib benchmark. The results demonstrate the superiority of MOTA/D and encourage further researches in the hybridization of Transgenetic Algorithms and Multiobjective Evolutionary Algorithms specially the ones based on decomposition.