Integer programming models for 3-dimensional Xingdu problem

Xingshen Huang Tsinghua High School Chuyao Peng Tsinghua High School Xinyi Xiong Tsinghua High School

S.-T. Yau High School Science Awarded Papers mathscidoc:1801.35031

Yau Science Award (Math), 2017.12
Xingdu is an emerging mathematical game about searching for a corresponding polyline for a given polyline in a 2-dimensional or 3-dimensional mesh grid, meanwhile the searched polyline should have the same start and end points as those of the given polyline and the corresponding line segments on the searched and given polylines are perpendicular each other respectively. Studying from mathematical perspective the problem solving and designing of Xingdu is helpful of finding a general method for Xingdu problem solving, but still not attract much more attentions due to the relatively short history of Xingdu. Referring to the achievements in mathematical methods for Sudoku, we investigated preliminarily the possibility of using optimization theory to solve the problem of Xingdu. According to the definition of Xingdu, the points on the given polyline and the solution polyline have to be the grid nodes in the mesh grid so that their coordinates are integer. In addition, there should not be any points appearing repeatedly and any three sequential points on the solution polyline cannot be located on a same line. Due to these constraints, the optimization problem related to Xingdu belongs to integer programming with nonlinear constraints, which is very difficult and usually can only be solved by enumerating. For this reason, we solve the related problem first by neglecting the nonlinear constraints so that it can be converted as an integer programming with linear constraints only. Afterwards, we can check whether it fulfill the related nonlinear constraints if a feasible solution is obtained. Based on that, we proposed two integer programming models for Xingdu problem, which are the model using only line segments perpendicular property as constraints and the binary integer programming model using line segments perpendicular property together with no repeated points as constraints. The test results show that the proposed binary integer programming model has a very good performance in finding the solution of Xingdu problem. We also discussed the possibility of using the proposed binary integer programming model together with random simulation to design a Xingdu problem. Due to the challenge of discriminating the uniqueness of Xingdu solution, we finally presented an approach, inspired from the branch and bound method for integer programming, which solves and designs the Xingdu problem by constructing and pruning a search tree.
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  title={Integer programming models for 3-dimensional Xingdu problem},
  author={Xingshen Huang, Chuyao Peng, and Xinyi Xiong},
  booktitle={Yau Science Award (Math)},
Xingshen Huang, Chuyao Peng, and Xinyi Xiong. Integer programming models for 3-dimensional Xingdu problem. 2017. In Yau Science Award (Math).
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