Abstract. We consider a sequence of projects of independent activities; each project composed of activities available for realization at the same time. It is assumed that the activities are continuous dynamical systems whose dynamics depend continuously on the allotted amounts of the resource, and the initial and terminal states are fixed. The problem is to allocate a renewable, continuously divisible resource (e.g., power, fuel flow, money per time unit, approximate manpower) to the activities in order to minimize the performance time of the sequence of projects under the assumption that the allowable level of the total usage of the resource is constant. Although the solution to this problem is known in the literature, nevertheless there is a lack of effective computational algorithms for the time-optimal resource allocation, especially in the case of really large projects. In this paper a decentralized two-level control scheme using the time-decomposition is proposed to find the time-optimal resource allocation in a sequence of projects. The price mechanism is applied to coordinate the lower level tasks of the optimal resource allocation in the successive time intervals determined by the moments at which the successive projects are available for realization. Necessary and sufficient conditions to ensure the determination of the optimal resource allocation according to the method proposed are stated. The problems connected with the numerical realization of the scheme are discussed and the resulting computer algorithm is outlined.
Key words: project of activities, resource allocation, time-optimal control, dynamical system, decentralized control