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A model-based approach for analysing network communication timeliness in IMA systems at concept level
Linköping University, Department of Computer and Information Science, Software and Systems. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.
Deptartment of Computer Science and Systems Engineering, Universidad de Zaragoza, Spain.
Linköping University, Department of Computer and Information Science, Software and Systems. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1485-0802
2021 (English)In: Proceedings of the 29th International Conference on Real-Time Networks and Systems, Association for Computing Machinery , 2021, p. 78-88Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Analyzing the resource adequacy of complex cyber-physical systems at concept development stage can be a challenging task since there are a lot of uncertainties about the system at this stage. In Integrated Modular Avionics (IMA) systems, with a life-cycle over several decades and potential functionality changes, we need to estimate resource needs at the early stage but leave capacity to absorb future modifications. Given an envisaged set of functions and a mapping to a candidate platform, one needs to assure that the selected network configuration will provide adequate resources to meet communication timeliness. In particular, whether the set of switches, the topology, and the available bandwidth are sufficient to meet the envisaged needs. In this paper, timeliness requirements are expressed as constraints on the freshness of data and a strict bounding of end-to-end latency. We support generation of UML/MARTE-based specifications by creating a domain-specific meta-model for IMA systems and a resource modelling approach for the study of time-critical systems. The instances of this model then specify the application requirements and various network configurations that can be formally analyzed. We present a tool, M2NC, for automatic derivation of a network calculus model through model transformation, and use the state-of-art NC tools for deriving the bounds for end-to-end timeliness. The approach is illustrated on an example avionics case study, consisting of 91 computational processes that exchange 629 different types of messages. The results of the analysis show that our approach can efficiently provide feedback on configurations that are compliant with the requirements imposed by the application and the toolchain provides a systematic mechanism to quickly identify potential future bottlenecks.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Association for Computing Machinery , 2021. p. 78-88
Series
RTNS ’21
Keywords [en]
UML-MARTE, Real-Time Systems, Network Resource Adequacy, Model Verification, Concept Analysis
National Category
Computer Systems
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-203160DOI: 10.1145/3453417.3453427OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-203160DiVA, id: diva2:1855311
Conference
RTNS'2021: 29th International Conference on Real-Time Networks and Systems NANTES France April 7 - 9, 2021
Note

Funding: This work was supported by the Swedish Governmental Agency for Innovation Systems- Vinnova, as part of the national projects on aeronautics, NFFP7, project CLASSICS (NFFP7 2017-04890). Simona Bernardi was partially supported by the project Medrese (RTI2018098543-B-I00) by the Spanish Ministry of Science, Innovation and Universities.

Available from: 2024-04-30 Created: 2024-04-30 Last updated: 2024-04-30
In thesis
1. Exploring Trade-offs in Concept Design of Integrated Modular Avionic Platform Configurations: Topology Generation, Resource Adequacy, and Dependability
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Exploring Trade-offs in Concept Design of Integrated Modular Avionic Platform Configurations: Topology Generation, Resource Adequacy, and Dependability
2024 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Modern aircraft heavily depend on computer systems to carry out various tasks. From managing flight surfaces and engines to processing radar and imagery data and facilitating communication with other aircraft and ground stations, computers are involved in almost every aspect of an aircraft’s operation. These computer systems, known as Integrated Modular Avionics (IMA) systems, have long life cycles that span several decades and undergo regular updates. Despite this, a significant portion of the overall life cycle costs is determined very early in the life cycle, in the concept design phase. 

While the early concept stage provides the best opportunity to influence the design of the system and its future costs, it is also the stage where information about the system is most limited. During this early stage, selecting a suitable IMA platform configuration must ensure sufficient resources for the intended aircraft functionalities, particularly in computing and networking capabilities. Additionally, the decisions regarding safety and security measures must align with application requirements. However, this is a complex task due to conflicting requirements, necessitating compromises, and the limited information available at this early stage. 

This thesis explores the analysis and generation of avionic architecture configurations during the concept stage, addressing the problem on two fronts. The first focuses on verifying whether a chosen IMA platform configuration provides sufficient resources to ensure timely communication for a specified set of avionic applications. The second centers on exploring the conceptual design space to find IMA platform configurations aligned with computing, networking, fault-tolerance, and security application needs. 

To contribute to the problem’s verification aspect, this thesis introduces two high-level abstractions, namely timed automata and a domain-specific model based on Unified Modelling Languages (UML), to model IMA systems at the concept stage. These are designed to capture inter-process message ex-changes within networked IMA platforms. Additionally, we propose a workflow and a supporting tool explicitly designed to translate our proposed model into a network calculus model for further analysis. The approach’s practicality and scalability are showcased through its application to an avionics use case. 

In exploring conceptual design space, this thesis proposes NetGAP, a domain-specific method in which interconnection patterns in generic networked system topologies are represented as graph grammars. Combined with Monte Carlo Tree Search and genetic algorithms, these grammars are used to navigate the solution space and generate candidate IMA platform configurations tailored to the requirements of an envisaged application. Through application to an avionics use case, NetGAP is shown to be scalable and suitable for different types of requirements. To further expedite the process, NetGAP has evolved into NeuralGAP. The latter employs graph neural networks to assess network topology compatibility with the target application, accelerating the concept exploration and improving its results.  

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2024. p. 67
Series
Linköping Studies in Science and Technology. Dissertations, ISSN 0345-7524 ; 2384
National Category
Computer Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-203166 (URN)10.3384/9789180756143 (DOI)9789180756136 (ISBN)9789180756143 (ISBN)
Public defence
2024-06-05, Key 1, Key-building, Campus Valla, Linköping, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
Vinnova, NFFP7 2017-04890; 2023-01183
Available from: 2024-04-30 Created: 2024-04-30 Last updated: 2024-05-24Bibliographically approved

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Saar de Moraes, RodrigoNadjm-Tehrani, Simin

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