OR541: Deterministic Operations Research Models

Systems Engineering and Operations Research Department

George Mason University

Fall 2006

Tuesdays, 4:30-7:10p.m. ST I 131

Professor: Rajesh Ganesan
Office: SciTech Building II, Room 323
Phone: (703)993-1693(direct) or 993-1670 (office)
Homepage for Course: http://classweb.gmu.edu/rganesan

Office hours: Tuesday: 2:00-3:00p.m. and by appointment

Text: W.L. Winston, Operations Research: Applications and Algorithms.  Duxbury Press. Fourth Edition, ISBN 0-534-38058-1


Course Description: This course is designed to introduce deterministic operations research modeling and methodology. It is designed to strengthen the students' knowledge and application of operations research techniques, provide the student with hands-on experience using micro-computer software in the field and to evaluate the applicability of such techniques to industry, government and science. A working knowledge of matrix algebra is essential. 


Software: You will be expected to use a modeling language to complete your project. You need to download:

MPL (Maximal Software Corporation), available by downloading from the internet (http://www.maximal-usa.com).


Main Goals:   

To improve decision-making with operations principles and methods, specifically:

To learn about a broad range of contemporary operations research methods and their applications to the real world.

To learn about the role of uncertainty and use of data in decision-making

To learn to communicate effectively


Basic Skills:

Formulating basic optimization problems and solving them using a modeling language

Understanding the effects of uncertainty in decision-making.


Homework and Grading:

Homework problems will be assigned after each session. Please visit http://classweb.gmu.edu/rganesan for HW Some or all of the assignments will be collected and graded. There will be one in-class midterm exam and the final will also be in class.  Exams are partly closed book and partly open book open notes.

There will also be one project that will require the formulation and solution to an optimization problem.


Grades will be computed as follows:

The midterm will count as 30%,

The project will count for 20%,

Homework will count 15%, and

The final will be worth the remaining 35%. 


Course Outline:

The course will include all or part of the following chapters from the Winston text, covered in the indicated sequence. The exact scheduling will depend upon the interests of the class, which will determine the amount of time that will be devoted to each topic.


         WEEK                       CHAPTER(S)                              TOPIC           

Week One                   Chap.1, 2, 3-1 to 3-4               Introduction to operations research

& linear programming.

Week Two                   Chap. 3                                    Formulation techniques and


Week Three                 Chap. 4-1 to 4-7                      The Simplex Method

Week Four                   Chap 4-8 to 4-12                     More Simplex Method             

Week Five                   Chap. 6-1 to 6-2                      Sensitivity Analysis & Duality

Week Six                     Chap. 6-3 to 6-10                    More Sensitivity Analysis

Week Seven                 Chap. 7-1 to 7-5                      The Transportation Problem

Week Eight                   Handout on Networks            Networks

Week Nine                   Handout on Networks            Networks

Week Ten Chap. 9-1 to 9-2                     Begin Integer Programming

Week Eleven                Chap. 9-3 to 9-5                      Integer Programming Methods

Week Twelve                Chap. 9-6 to 9-8                      Integer Programming Methods

Week Thirteen              Chap. 11-1 to 11-3                 Introduction to Nonlinear


Week Fourteen             Chap. 11-4 to 11-6                  Nonlinear Programming

Week Fifteen                Chap. 11-7 to 11-8                  Nonlinear Programming


Fundamental Rules:

Academic Policy:


All academic policies as given in the Honor System and code will be strictly followed. Visit URL http://www.gmu.edu/catalog/apolicies/#Anchor12


Exams: Midterm Oct 10th 2006, Final Dec 12th 2006.



Letter grades will be decided as follows:

97% and above A+, 94-96%- A, 90-93% -A-, 86-89- B+, 83-85%-B, 80-82%-B-, 76-79%- C+, 73-75%- C, 70-72%-C-, 66-69%-D+, 63-65%-D, 60-62%-D-, at or below 59%-F


Exams will only be given at the predetermined dates. Early or late exam taking will not be allowed, except for very special cases.

Please visit http://classweb.gmu.edu/rganesan to check for announcements, Hw problems, and solutions.


Please turn off your cell phones before class and do not use your cell phone during lecture. Feel free to walk out without distracting the class as and when needed.

You will receive some lecture notes as and when its needed. I will approach every topic by describing the objective, theory, formula and examples. This should make your effort in understanding the course a lot easier.