AAAI Publications, Tenth Annual Symposium on Combinatorial Search

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Strengthening Canonical Pattern Databases with Structural Symmetries
Silvan Sievers, Martin Wehrle, Malte Helmert, Michael Katz

Last modified: 2017-06-05


Symmetry-based state space pruning techniques have proved to greatly improve heuristic search based classical planners. Similarly, abstraction heuristics in general and pattern databases in particular are key ingredients of such planners. However, only little work has dealt with how the abstraction heuristics behave under symmetries. In this work, we investigate the symmetry properties of the popular canonical pattern databases heuristic. Exploiting structural symmetries, we strengthen the canonical pattern databases by adding symmetric pattern databases, making the resulting heuristic invariant under structural symmetry, thus making it especially attractive for symmetry-based pruning search methods. Further, we prove that this heuristic is at least as informative as using symmetric lookups over the original heuristic. An experimental evaluation confirms these theoretical results.

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