Revisiting the Complexity Analysis of Conflict-Based Search: New Computational Techniques and Improved Bounds


  • Ofir Gordon Technion
  • Yuval Filmus Technion
  • Oren Salzman Technion



Analysis Of Search Algorithms, Bounding And Pruning Techniques, Search In Robotics


The problem of Multi-Agent Path Finding (MAPF) calls for finding a set of conflict-free paths for a fleet of agents operating in a given environment. Arguably, the state-of-the-art approach to computing optimal solutions is Conflict-Based Search (CBS). In this work we revisit the complexity analysis of CBS to provide tighter bounds on the algorithm's run-time in the worst-case. Our analysis paves the way to better pinpoint the parameters that govern (in the worst case) the algorithm's computational complexity. Our analysis is based on two complementary approaches: In the first approach we bound the run-time using the size of a Multi-valued Decision Diagram (MDD)--a layered graph which compactly contains all possible single-agent paths between two given vertices for a specific path length. In the second approach we express the running time by a novel recurrence relation which bounds the algorithm's complexity. We use generating functions-based analysis in order to tightly bound the recurrence. Using these technique we provide several new upper-bounds on CBS's complexity. The results allow us to improve the existing bound on the running time of CBS for many cases. For example, on a set of common benchmarks we improve the upper-bound by a factor of at least 2 to the power of 10,000,000.