Exploiting a Graphplan Framework in Temporal Planning

Derek Long and Maria Fox

Graphplan has proved a popular and successful basis for a succession of extensions. An extension to handle temporal planning is a natural one to consider, because of the seductively time-like structure of the layers in the plan graph. TGP and TPSys are both examples of temporal planners that have exploited the Graphplan foundation. However, both of these systems (including both versions of TPSys) exploit the graph to represent a uniform flow of time. In this paper we describe an alternative approach, in which the graph is used to represent the purely logical structuring of the plan, with temporal constraints being managed separately (although not independently). The approach uses a linear constraint solver to ensure that temporal durations are correctly respected. The resulting planner offers an interesting alternative to the other approaches, offering an important extension in expressive power.

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