Prof. Andreas Gerstlauer Awarded $488K for CPS Research

Friday, September 19, 2014

Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS) promise great advances to society in fields such as transportation and healthcare. CPS are computer systems that interact directly with the physical world, such as in robotics or self-driving cars.

The challenge, according to WNCG Prof. Andreas Gerstlauer, is these systems must operate within tight constraints imposed by their physical environment. They must be able to complete tasks on time and with minimal overhead in a real-world environment.

“If an airbag sensor fired eventually, that’s not good enough,” Prof. Gerstlauer states. “It needs to fire at the right point in time. The key is to formulate design methods that ensure correctness and efficiency before these systems are built.”

According to Prof. Gerstlauer, a key element of CPS involves networking of devices.

“This need for networking of systems that are deeply embedded in the environment brings new challenges, such as uncertainties and data losses associated with wireless communications,” Prof. Gerstlauer states. “We have to provide guarantees such as real-time performance, reliability and safety, all while enabling network-wide optimizations. Humans alone cannot do this. We need the help of algorithms and design tools.”

To meet this challenge, the National Science Foundation awarded Prof. Gerstlauer over $488,000. The grant empowers Prof. Gerstlauer and his team of WNCG graduate students to investigate formalized methods that incorporate networking aspects as part of the CPS design process.

“CPS hold a lot of promise but they need to be networked to deliver on that promise,” Prof. Gerstlauer states. “We’re trying to develop better analysis and simulation methods so designers can build better, safer and more reliable CPS.” 

For more information, visit: NSF Grant #1421642.