Stochastic Optimal Path Problem with Relays

Peng Chen, Yu Nie*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


This paper studies the optimal path problem for travelers driving with vehicles of a limited range, such as most battery electric vehicles currently available in the market. The optimal path in this problem often consists of several relay points, where the vehicles can be refueled to extend its range. We propose a stochastic optimal path problem with relays (SOPPR), which aims at minimizing a general expected cost while maintaining a reasonable arrival probability. To account for uncertainty in the road network, the travel speed on a road segment is treated as a discrete random variable, which determines the total energy required to traverse the segment. SOPPR is formulated in two stages in this paper. In the first stage, an optimal routing problem is solved repeatedly to obtain the expected costs and arrival probabilities from any node to all refueling nodes and the destination. With this information, the second stage constructs an auxiliary network, on which the sequence of refueling decisions can be obtained by solving another optimal path problem. Label-correcting algorithms are developed to solve the routing problems in both stages. Numerical experiments are conducted to compare the stochastic and deterministic models, to examine the impact of different parameters on the routing results, and to evaluate the computational performance of the proposed algorithms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)129-148
Number of pages20
JournalTransportation Research Procedia
StatePublished - 2015


  • arrival probability
  • label-correcting algorithm
  • relays
  • stochastic optimal path

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Transportation


Dive into the research topics of 'Stochastic Optimal Path Problem with Relays'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this