Complex-demand scheduling problem with application in smart grid

Majid Khonji, Areg Karapetyan, Khaled Elbassioni, Sid Chi Kin Chau

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


We consider the problem of scheduling complex-valued demands over a discretized time horizon. Given a set of users, each user is associated with a set of demands representing different power consumption preferences. A demand is represented by a complex number, a time interval, and a utility value obtained if it is satisfied. At each time slot, the magnitude of the total selected demands should not exceed a given generation capacity. This naturally captures the supply constraints in alternating current (AC) electric systems. In this paper, we consider maximizing the aggregate user utility subject to power supply limits over a time horizon. We present approximation algorithms characterized by the maximum angle ϕ between any two complex-valued demands. More precisely, a PTAS is presented for the case ϕ∈[0,[Formula presented]], a bi-criteria FPTAS for ϕ∈[0,π-ε] for any polynomially small ε assuming the number of time slots in the discretized time horizon is a constant. Furthermore, if the number of time slots is part of the input, we present a reduction to the real-valued unsplittable flow problem on a path with only a constant approximation ratio. Finally, we present a practical greedy algorithm for the single time slot case with an approximation ratio of [Formula presented]cos⁡[Formula presented] and a running time complexity of only O(Nlog⁡N), N standing for the aggregate number of user demands, which can be implemented efficiently in practice.

Original languageBritish English
Pages (from-to)34-50
Number of pages17
JournalTheoretical Computer Science
StatePublished - 21 Feb 2019


  • Algorithms
  • Knapsack
  • Scheduling
  • Smart grid
  • Unsplittable flow


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