Problems in power systems and operations research require repeatedly solving large-scale linear programming problems with a large number of different inputs. In energy systems with high levels of uncertain renewable resources, tens of thousands of scenarios may need to be solved every few minutes. Standard iterative algorithms for linear network flow problems, even though highly efficient, becomes a bottleneck in these applications. In this work, we propose a novel learning approach to accelerate the solving process. By leveraging the rich theory and economic interpretations of LP duality, we interpret the output of the neural network as a noisy codeword, where the codebook is given by the optimization problem’s KKT conditions. We propose a feedforward decoding strategy that finds the optimal set of active constraints. This design is error correcting and can offer orders of magnitude speedup compared to current state-of-the-art iterative solvers, while providing much better solutions in terms of feasibility and optimality compared to end-to-end learning approaches.
- Y. Chen and B. Zhang, “Learning to Solve Network Flow Problems via Neural Decoding,” arXiv preprint arXiv:2002.04091, 2020.