A stochastic programming approach for planning horizons of infinite horizon capacity planning problems
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Planning horizon is a key issue in production planning. Different from previous approaches based on Markov Decision Processes, we study the planning horizon of capacity planning problems within the framework of stochastic programming. We first consider an infinite horizon stochastic capacity planning model involving a single resource, linear cost structure, and discrete distributions for general stochastic cost and demand data (non-Markovian and non-stationary). We give sufficient conditions for the existence of an optimal solution. Furthermore, we study the monotonicity property of the finite horizon approximation of the original problem. We show that, the optimal objective value and solution of the finite horizon approximation problem will converge to the optimal objective value and solution of the infinite horizon problem, when the time horizon goes to infinity. These convergence results, together with the integrality of decision variables, imply the existence of a planning horizon. We also develop a useful formula to calculate an upper bound on the planning horizon. Then by decomposition, we show the existence of a planning horizon for a class of very general stochastic capacity planning problems, which have complicated decision structure.
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