Transportation Problem
 Stepping Stone Method 
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
Transportation Table
DESTINATIONS
1
A
SOURCES
C
DEMAND
SUPPLY
10
30
50
10
10
40
20
30
50
50
40
60
50
150
Z = 4x10+6x30+6x50+7x10+5x10+8x40 = 960
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
1. Starting at an unused/empty cell, trace a closed path or
loop back to the original cell via cells that are currently
being used and/or occupied.
Note: A closed path or loop is a sequence of cells in the
transportation table such that the first cell is
unused/empty
and
all
the
other
cells
are
used/occupied with the following conditions:
a. Each pair of consecutive used/occupied cells lies in
either the same row or column
b. No three consecutive used/occupied cells lie in the
same row or column
c. The first and last cells of a sequence lies in the same
row or column
d. No cell appears more than once in a sequence (i.e. no
duplication)
e. Only horizontal and vertical moves allowed and can
only change directions at used/occupied cells
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
Example:
At Cell
A3,
A3>B3>B4>C4>C1>A1>A3
DESTINATIONS
1
4
SUPPLY
A
SOURCES
40
10
30
60
50
10
50
DEMAND
10
20
30
50
40
50
150
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
Example: At Cell A4,
A4>C4>C1>A1>A4
DESTINATIONS
1
4
SUPPLY
40
10
30
SOURCES
60
50
10
50
DEMAND
10
20
30
50
40
50
150
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
Example: At Cell B1, B1>B4>C4>C1>B1
DESTINATIONS
1
A
SOURCES
C
DEMAND
SUPPLY
10
30
50
10
10
40
20
30
50
50
40
60
50
150
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
Example: At Cell
B2,
B2>B4>C4>C1>A1>A2>B2
DESTINATIONS
1
4
SUPPLY
40
10
30
SOURCES
60
50
10
50
DEMAND
10
20
30
50
40
50
150
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
Example:
1
4
SUPPLY
40
10
30
SOURCES
60
50
10
50
DEMAND
10
20
30
50
40
50
150
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
Example:
At Cell
C3,
C3>B3>B4>C4>C3
DESTINATIONS
1
4
SUPPLY
40
10
30
SOURCES
60
50
10
50
DEMAND
10
20
30
50
40
50
150
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
2. For every traced path or loop, begin with a plus (+) sign
at the starting unused cell and alternately place a minus
() and plus (+) sign at each used cell
Example: At Cell A3, A3>B3>B4>C4>C1>A1>A3
DESTINATIONS
DEMAND
10
30
50
10
SUPPLY
10
40
20
30
50
50
SOURCES
40
60
50
150
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
3. Calculate an Improvement Index by first adding the
unitcost figures found in each cell containing a plus sign
and subtracting the unit costs in each square containing a
minus sign.
Example:
At Cell A3, A3>B3>B4>C4>C1>A1>A3
DESTINATIONS
DEMAND
4
4
8
8
10
30
6

50
7
+
7
10
5
+
5
SUPPLY
10
20
30
IA3 =
50
8
8
40
50
=2
SOURCES
40
60
50
150
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
Iteration #1  Computing for the Improvement Index:
At A3, A3>B3>B4>C4>C1>A1; IA3 = +86+78+54 =
2
At A4, A4>C4>C1>A1;
IA4 = +88+54 = 1
At B1, B1>B4>C4>C1;
IB1 = +6785 = 2
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
Example: At Cell C3, C3>B3>B4>C4
IC3 = +66+78 =
1
DESTINATIONS
1
4
SUPPLY
40
10
30
SOURCES
50
10
DEMAND
10
20
30
50
40
50
60
50
150
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
To further improve the current solution, select the smallest
number found in the path/loop C3>B3>B4>C4 containing
minus() signs. This number is added to all cells on the closed
path/loop with plus(+) signs and subtracted from all cells on the
path assigned with minus() signs.
DESTINATIONS
1
4
SUPPLY
40
10
30
SOURCES
+
10 +
50 50
40
40
40
40
DEMAND
10
20
30
40
50
10
40
50
60
50
150
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
5. Then, we have a new basic feasible solution
DESTINATIONS
1
A
SOURCES
C
DEMAND
SUPPLY
10
30
10
50
10
40
20
30
50
50
40
60
50
150
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
Iteration #2  Computing for the Improvement Index:
At A3, A3>C3>C1>A1;
IA3 = +86+54 = 3
At A4, A4>B4>B3>C3>C1>A1; IA4 = +87+66+54 =
2
At B1, B1>B3>C3>C1;
IB1 = +66+65 = 1
At B2, B2>B3>C3>C1>A1>A2; IB2 = +86+65+46 =
1
At C2, C2>C1>A1>A2;
IC2 = +75+46 = 0
Since
results of all indices calculated
are greater=than
At C4,the
C3>B3>B4;
IC3 = +86+67
1 or
equal to zero, then, an optimal solution had been reached.
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
and computing the objective function Z:
DESTINATIONS
1
A
SOURCES
C
DEMAND
SUPPLY
10
30
10
50
10
40
20
30
50
50
Z = 4x10+6x30+6x10+7x50+5x10+6x40
= 920
40
60
50
150
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
However, in checking the calculation in Iteration #2, there is
an improvement index equal to zero. This means that there
is an ALTERNATE optimum solution:
In Iteration #2 :
At A3, A3>C3>C1>A1;
IA3 = +86+54 = 3
IC3 = +86+67 = 1
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
To calculate for the alternate optimum solution, again select the
smallest number found in this path/loop containing minus() signs.
This number is added to all cells on the closed path/loop with
plus(+) signs and subtracted from all cells on the path assigned with
minus() signs.
Hence, at C2>C1>A1DESTINATIONS
>A2,
1
4
A
SOURCES
10 +
10
10
SUPPLY
30 30
10
40
60
DEMAND
10 10
10
20
10
30
10
50
50
40
50
50
150
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
Then the alternate optimum solution with objective function
Z:
DESTINATIONS
1
A
SOURCES
C
DEMAND
SUPPLY
20
20
10
50
10
40
20
30
50
50
Z = 4x20+6x20+6x10+7x50+7x10+6x40
= 920
40
60
50
150
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
DEGENERACY
When the number of empty/occupied cells in any solution
(either initial or later) of the transportation table is not equal
to the number of rows plus the number of columns minus 1
(i.e. m+n1) the solution is called DEGENERATE
Example: m + n 1 = 3 + 4 1 =
6
DESTINATIONS
1
A
SOURCES
B
C
DEMAND
SUPPLY
20
20
10
50
50
20
30
50
50
40
60
50
150
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
DEGENERACY
To handle degenerate problems, artificially create an occupied
cell by placing a zero (representing a fake shipment) in one
of the unused cells. Treating this cell as if it were occupied, it
must be chosen in such a position as to allow all steppingstone paths to be traced. Then, all steppingstone paths can
be closed and improvement indices computed.
Example:
DESTINATIONS
1
A
SOURCES
B
C
DEMAND
SUPPLY
20
20
10
50
50
20
30
50
50
40
60
50
150
Optimum Solution:
SteppingStone Method
QUESTIONS?
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