Carnegie Mellon University
Multi-Model Heterogeneous Verification of Cyber-Physical Systems.pdf (1.43 MB)

Multi-Model Heterogeneous Verification of Cyber-Physical Systems

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posted on 2013-05-01, 00:00 authored by Akshay H. Rajhans

Complex systems are designed using the model-based design paradigm in which mathematical models of systems are created and checked against specifications. Cyber-physical systems (CPS) are complex systems in which the physical environment is sensed and controlled by computational or cyber elements possibly distributed over communication networks. Various aspects of CPS design such as physical dynamics, software, control, and communication networking must interoperate correctly for correct functioning of the systems. Modeling formalisms, analysis techniques and tools for designing these different aspects have evolved independently, and remain dissimilar and disparate. There is no unifying formalism in which one can model all these aspects equally well. Therefore, model-based design of CPS must make use of a collection of models in several different formalisms and use respective analysis methods and tools together to ensure correct system design. To enable doing this in a formal manner, this thesis develops a framework for multi-model verification of cyber-physical systems based on behavioral semantics.

Heterogeneity arising from the different interacting aspects of CPS design must be addressed in order to enable system-level verification. In current practice, there is no principled approach that deals with this modeling heterogeneity within a formal framework. We develop behavioral semantics to address heterogeneity in a general yet formal manner. Our framework makes no assumptions about the specifics of any particular formalism, therefore it readily supports various formalisms, techniques and tools. Models can be analyzed independently in isolation, supporting separation of concerns. Mappings across heterogeneous semantic domains enable associations between analysis results. Interdependencies across different models and specifications can be formally represented as constraints over parameters and verification can be carried out in a semantically consistent manner. Composition of analysis results is supported both hierarchically across different levels of abstraction and structurally into interacting component models at a given level of abstraction. The theoretical concepts developed in the thesis are illustrated using a case study on the hierarchical heterogeneous verification of an automotive intersection collision avoidance system.




Degree Type

  • Dissertation


  • Electrical and Computer Engineering

Degree Name

  • Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Bruce Krogh