What Is Queen Problem Data Structure and Algorithm?


Heather Bennett

The Queen Problem is a classic data structure and algorithm problem that involves finding all possible configurations of placing N queens on an NxN chessboard without any two queens threatening each other. In this article, we will dive into the details of this problem, explore various algorithms to solve it, and understand its significance in computer science.

Understanding the Queen Problem

The Queen Problem is often used as a benchmark for testing the efficiency of algorithms and exploring different data structures. The goal is to find all possible placements of N queens on an NxN chessboard in such a way that no two queens can attack each other. A queen can move horizontally, vertically, or diagonally on the chessboard.

Approaches to Solve the Queen Problem

There are multiple approaches to solve the Queen Problem, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. Let’s explore some popular algorithms:

  • Brute Force Algorithm: This is the simplest approach where we generate all possible configurations of queen placements on the chessboard and check if they are valid. Although easy to implement, this algorithm has exponential time complexity.
  • Backtracking Algorithm: Backtracking is a widely used technique to solve combinatorial problems like the Queen Problem.

    It involves systematically exploring different configurations and backtracking whenever we encounter an invalid placement. This algorithm significantly reduces the search space.

  • N-Queens Bitmasking Algorithm: This algorithm uses bitwise operations and bitmasking techniques to efficiently solve the problem. By representing rows, columns, and diagonals using bitmasks, we can check valid placements in constant time.

The Significance of the Queen Problem

The Queen Problem not only serves as an interesting puzzle but also has practical applications in various domains. It helps in understanding and developing efficient algorithms for solving complex combinatorial problems. The problem has been extensively studied and provides valuable insights into data structures, search algorithms, and optimization techniques.

Moreover, the Queen Problem can be extended to solve related problems like the N-Queens Puzzle, where additional constraints are introduced to find specific solutions. The problem also finds applications in areas such as computer vision, constraint programming, and artificial intelligence.


The Queen Problem is a fascinating data structure and algorithm problem that challenges our ability to find all valid configurations of placing N queens on an NxN chessboard. By exploring different algorithms like brute force, backtracking, and bitmasking, we can efficiently solve this problem.

Its significance lies not only in its theoretical aspects but also in its practical applications across various domains.

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