Heterogeneous multi-agent resource allocation through multi-bidding with applications to precision agriculture

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In this paper we consider the problem of allocating multiple resources to a number of clients by a group of heterogeneous agents over time such that the clients can produce products while maximizing a profit function. We propose an approximate optimization framework in which every client provides multiple bids from which the agents choose such that an allocation is feasible and that the profit function is maximized over time. The proposed framework exploits decomposition techniques that can be used for large-scale multi-agent resource allocation problems in which the cost objective is additive, the dynamics of product generation is non-linear and the agents have different capabilities. Interestingly, the decomposition can be solved in a distributed fashion, enabling application to large-scale problems. We apply this decomposition to the management of resources and agents in precision agriculture as an inspirational and important application domain of the obtained results. We show that our framework can be used in order to schedule the time, location and quantity of resources that every agent must provide whilst optimizing the profit of the entire farm over the growing season.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)194-199
Number of pages6
Issue number23
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2018
Event7th IFAC Workshop on Distributed Estimation and Control in Networked Systems NECSYS 2018 - Groningen, Netherlands
Duration: 27 Aug 201828 Aug 2018


  • Agriculture
  • Approximate dynamic programming
  • Distributed optimization
  • Multi-agent resource allocation
  • Optimal control


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