Generalized External Optimization: A New Meta-Heuristic Inspired by a Model of Natural Evolution
Fabiano Luis de Sousa (INPE, Brazil), Fernando Manuel Ramos (INPE, Brazil), Roberto Luiz Galski (INPE, Brazil) and Issamu Muraoka (INPE, Brazil)
Copyright: © 2005
In this chapter a recently proposed meta-heuristic devised to be used in complex optimization problems is presented. Called Generalized Extremal Optimization (GEO), it was inspired by a simple co-evolutionary model, developed to show the emergence of self-organized criticality in ecosystems. The algorithm is of easy implementation, does not make use of derivatives and can be applied to unconstrained or constrained problems, non-convex or even disjoint design spaces, with any combination of continuous, discrete or integer variables. It is a global search meta-heuristic, like the Genetic Algorithm (GA) and the Simulated Annealing (SA), but with the advantage of having only one free parameter to adjust. The GEO has been shown to be competitive to the GA and the SA in tackling complex design spaces and a useful tool in real design problems. Here the algorithm is described, including a step-by-step implementation to a simple numerical example, its main characteristics highlighted, and its efficacy as a design tool illustrated with an application to satellite thermal design.