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Operations Research Models

OR Dated back to World War II.

Mathematical modeling, feasible solutions,
optimization, and iterative search.
Defining the problem correctly is the most
important thing.
Solution to a decision-making problem
requires answering three questions:

What are the decision alternatives?

Under what restrictions is the decision made?
What is an appropriate objective criterion for
evaluating the alternatives?


Discussion of two important

examples in class..

Operations Research

solution of a model is feasible if it

satisfies all the constraints.
It is optimal if it yields to the best
value of the objectives.
OR models are designed to
Optimize a specific objective
Suboptimal solution: in case we can
not determine all the alternatives.

Solving the OR Model

In OR, we do not have a single general

technique to solve all mathematical models.
The type and complexity of the mathematical
models dictate the nature of the solution
method (e.g. the previous examples).
The most prominent OR technique is linear
Integer programming.
Dynamic programming.
Network programming.
Nonlinear programming.

Cont ..

Solution to OR model may be determined by

The algorithm provides fixed computational
rules that are applied repetitively to the
Each repetition moves the solution closer to
the optimum.
Some mathematical models may be so
In the above case we may use some other
methods to find a good solution.

Queuing and Simulation

Models deal with the
Queuing and simulation

study of waiting lines.

They are not optimization technique.
They determine measures of
performance of the waiting lines, such

Average waiting time in queue.

Average waiting time for service.
Utilization of service facilities

The use of simulation has drawbacks.

Art of Modeling

The previous examples are true

representation of a real situation.
That is a rare situation in OR.
Majority of applications usually involve
Figure 1.1 in your textbook.
The assumed real world is derived using
the dominant variables in the real system.
In order to design a model we should
consider the main variables in the real
Example: A manufacturing company that
produce a variety of plastic containers.

Phases of an OR Study

As a decision-making tool, OR is both a

science and an art.
The principal phases for implementing OR
in practice includes:

Definition of the problem.

Construction of the model.
Solution of the model.
Validation of the model.
Implementation of the solution.