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The Crop Growth Scheduling Problem in Vertical Farming

Alberto Santini(alberto.santini***at***upf.edu)
Michael Schneider(schneider***at***dpo.rwth-aachen.de)
Vinicius Greco de Lemos(v.grecodelemos***at***student.utwente.nl)

Abstract: In this paper, we study the problem of devising an efficient growth schedule for crops growing in shelves inside vertical farming cabinets under controlled growth conditions. By adjusting temperature, humidity, light, and other environmental conditions in different parts of the cabinets, a planner must ensure that crop growth is able to satisfy the demand for the final produce. We propose an integer programming formulation able to capture real-life operational characteristics, including changes of growth conditions on a daily, shelf-by-shelf basis, over a planning horizon of months. We compare four objective functions from which a planner can choose, depending on the concrete operations of the company. A computational study on realistic instances, which we make available as a public dataset, shows that the choice of objective function heavily influences both the difficulty of solving the model with a standard solver and the solution characteristics.

Keywords: scheduling, production planning, vertical farming, agriculture

Category 1: Applications -- OR and Management Sciences (Scheduling )

Citation: Unpublished; No tech report number; Universitat Pompeu Fabra; 2020.

Download: [PDF]

Entry Submitted: 04/24/2020
Entry Accepted: 04/24/2020
Entry Last Modified: 04/24/2020

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