Algorithms; Graph theory; Trees (Graph theory)


In numerous practical applications, it is necessary to find the smallest possible tree with a bounded diameter. A diameter-constrained minimum spanning tree (DCMST) of a given undirected, edge-weighted graph, G, is the smallest-weight spanning tree of all spanning trees of G which contain no path with more than k edges, where k is a given positive integer. The problem of finding a DCMST is NP-complete for all values of k; 4 ≤ k ≤ (n - 2), except when all edge-weights are identical.

A DCMST is essential for the efficiency of various distributed mutual exclusion algorithms, where it can minimize the number of messages communicated among processors per critical section. It is also useful in linear lightwave networks, where it can minimize interference in the network by limiting the traffic in the network lines. Another practical application requiring a DCMST arises in data compression, where some algorithms compress a file utilizing a data-structure, and decompress a path in the tree to access a record. A DCMST helps such algorithms to be fast without sacrificing a lot of storage space.

We present a survey of the literature on the DCMST problem, study the expected diameter of a random labeled tree, and present five new polynomial-time algorithms for an approximate DCMST. One of our new algorithms constructs approximate DCMST in a modified greedy fashion, employing a heuristic for selecting an edge to be added to the tree in each stage of the construction. Three other new algorithms start with an unconstrained minimum spanning tree, and iteratively refine it into an approximate DCMST. We also present ab algorithm designed for the special case when the diameter is required to be no more than 4. Such a diameter-4 tree is also used for evaluating the quality of other algorithms. All five algorithms were implemented on a PC, and four of them were also parallelized and implemented on a massively parallel machine-the MasPar MP-1. We discuss convergence, relative merits, and implementation of these heuristics. Our extensive empirical study shows that the heuristics produce good solutions for a wide variety of inputs.

Graduation Date



Deo, Narsingh


Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


College of Engineering and Computer Science


Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Degree Program

Electrical Engineering and Computer Science






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Length of Campus-only Access


Access Status

Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)




Dissertations, Academic -- Engineering; Engineering -- Dissertations, Academic