Online coordinated search and rescue with stochastic demand at the University of Texas at Austin
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We model an online coordinated search and rescue problem that accounts for late information, as well as online information in a stochastic framework. The problem is formulated as a Markovian Decision Process, and bothan exact solution method as well as a heuristic framework are developed in order to solve the problem. Due to the computational complexity of the exact solution methodology, numerical results are developed for the heuristic solution only. The heuristic developed is based on the use of an estimate of the recursive function to both approximate the value of the recursive function after a certain number of steps in the procedue and to discard policies with a high value for the estimate. We find that the heuristic performs well for relatively small networks, but computational complexity makes solving bigger problems not suitable for practical applications.