The robust spanning tree problem is a variation, motivated by telecommunications applications, of the classic minimum spanning tree problem. In the robust spanning tree problem edge costs lie in an interval instead of having a fixed value. Interval numbers model uncertainty about the exact cost values. A robust spanning tree is a spanning tree whose total cost minimizes the maximum deviation from the optimal spanning tree over all realizations of the edge costs. This robustness concept is formalized in mathematical terms and is used to drive optimization. This paper describes a new exact method, based on Benders decomposition, for the robust spanning tree problem with interval data. Computational results highlight the efficiency of the new method, which is shown to be very fast on all the benchmarks considered, and in particular on those that were harder to solve for the methods previously known.
A Benders decomposition approach for the robust spanning tree problem with interval data / Montemanni, Roberto. - In: EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF OPERATIONAL RESEARCH. - ISSN 0377-2217. - 174:3(2006), pp. 1479-1490. [10.1016/j.ejor.2005.02.060]