Dr Hassan Hijazi from the Research School of Computer Science has been recently awarded the 2015 "Rising Star" award from the Australian Society of Operations Research (ASOR) . The award was announced at the MODSIM conference on the Gold Coast in December and recognises an early career researcher who has made a significant contribution to the field of optimisation and planning.
Operations Research is essencially applied planning and optimisation and Dr Hijazi has made a number of significant contributions to the field of Opperations Research.
Hassan has developed the theory defining exact representations of on/off constraints in mixed-interger linear and nonlinear programming, with his top tier publications already being cited in coursework, survey articles and talks. Disjunctive Constraints are at the core of discrete and mixed-interger programming.
Hassan has also worked on industrial applications, studying problems arising in electrical power systems, particularly modelling the alternating current power flow equations. This area grows in importance: as more and more renewable energy sources are connected to the grid, the control of these huge systems becomes much more difficult. Until now, these systems were modelled using either very inaccurate linear approximations, or accurate but cumbersome semi-definite programming relaxations. Hassan introduced convex relaxations that are as accurate as the semi-definite programming relaxations, but computationally more tractable. This work is now the subject of a patent application.
The depth and breadth of Hassan's theoretical work, as well as his work on questions with direct industrial application, mark him as someone special to watch in the optimisation space, but also as a researcher who has already accomplished much, but also with great potential for the future.