A Framework for Automatic Problem Decomposition in Planning

Qiang Yang, Shuo Bai and Guiyou Qiu

An intelligent problem solver must be able to decompose a complex problem into simplex parts. A decomposition algorithm would not only be beneficial for traditional subgoal-oriented planning systems but also support distributed, multi-agent planners. In this paper, we present an algorithm for automatic problem decomposition. Given a domain description with a number of objects to be manipulated, our method constructs subspaces comp!ete with subproblem descriptions and opexators, and solves the subproblems concurrently. The solutions in individual subspaces are combined using a constraint satisfaction algorithm. The effectiveness of the approach is guaranteed by our careful analysis of the interactions among different subspaces. The results presented in this paper support parallel, distributed and multi-agent planning systems.

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