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Parallel and Sequential Resources Networks

Alexandre BenattiLuciano da F. Costa
Nov 2023
A large number of real and abstract systems involve the transformation of some basic resource into respective products under the action of multiple processing agents, which can be understood as multiple-agent production systems (MAP). At each discrete time instant, for each agent, a fraction of the resources is assumed to be kept, forwarded to other agents, or converted into work with some efficiency. The present work describes a systematic study of nine basic MAP architectures subdivided into two main groups, namely parallel and sequential distribution of resources from a single respective source. Several types of interconnections among the involved processing agents are also considered. The resulting MAP architectures are studied in terms of the total amount of work, the dispersion of the resources (states) among the agents, and the transition times from the start of operation until the respective steady state. Several interesting results are obtained and discussed, including the observation that some of the parallel designs were able to yield maximum work and minimum state dispersion, achieved at the expense of the transition time and use of several interconnections between the source and the agents. The results obtained for the sequential designs indicate that relatively high performance can be obtained for some specific cases.
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