Scheduling about an unrestricted common due window with arbitrary earliness/tardiness penalty rates

Azizoğlu, Meral
Webster, S
We consider the NP-hard problem of scheduling jobs on a single machine about an unrestricted due window to minimize total weighted earliness and tardiness cost. Each job has an earliness penalty rate and a tardiness penalty rate that are allowed to be arbitrary. Earliness or tardiness cost is assessed when a job completes outside the due window, which may be an instant in time or a time increment defining acceptable job completion. In this paper we present properties that characterize the structure of an optimal schedule, present a lower bound, propose a two-step branch and bound algorithm, and report results from a computational experiment. We rnd that optimal solutions can be quickly obtained for medium-sized problem instances.