CPS: Small: Towards Robust Cyber-Physical Systems
Lead PI:
Paulo Tabuada
The objective of this research is to develop the theoretical foundations of robust cyber-physical systems. Robustness is the property ensuring that slight perturbations in the cyber, physical, or in the interaction between the cyber and the physical components, e.g., noise in sensor measurements, causes only slight changes in the system execution. While it is theoretically possible to enumerate all possible faults that can occur in a cyber-physical system and to design software components that correctly handle all such faults, the resulting specifications would be unwieldy and difficult to understand or verify. Instead, this project investigates the design of software components that guarantee robustness of cyber-physical systems with respect to unmodeled faults. The approach consist in abstracting and generalizing several key ideas from robust control theory to cyber-physical systems. The project's intellectual merit is divided in two parts. The first part consists in defining a notion of robustness for cyber-physical systems relying on finite-state abstractions of the physical world retaining metric information about physical quantities. The second part consists in developing the methods and tools for automatically synthesizing software modules enforcing desired specifications in a robust manner. The tools and techniques developed in this project will significantly enhance our ability to produce robust cyber-physical systems and thus have a broad impact in several application areas transcending computer science and control engineering. Moreover, the broader impact of the proposed research is amplified by explicitly addressing the lack of robustness in legacy software through the development of robustifying software patches. To enhance the transfer of the research results to industry, the PIs and the Electrical Engineering Office of Industrial Relations will host a workshop for the local industry on robust cyber- physical systems.
Paulo Tabuada

Paulo Tabuada was born in Lisbon, Portugal, one year after the Carnation Revolution. He received his "Licenciatura" degree in Aerospace Engineering from Instituto Superior Tecnico, Lisbon, Portugal in 1998 and his Ph.D. degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering in 2002 from the Institute for Systems and Robotics, a private research institute associated with Instituto Superior Tecnico. Between January 2002 and July 2003 he was a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Pennsylvania. After spending three years at the University of Notre Dame, as an Assistant Professor, he joined the Electrical Engineering Department at the University of California, Los Angeles, where he established and directs the Cyber-Physical Systems Laboratory. Paulo Tabuada's contributions to cyber-physical systems have been recognized by multiple awards including the NSF CAREER award in 2005, the Donald P. Eckman award in 2009 and the George S. Axelby award in 2011. In 2009 he co-chaired the International Conference Hybrid Systems: Computation and Control (HSCC'09) and in he was program co-chair for the 3rd IFAC Workshop on Distributed Estimation and Control in Networked Systems (NecSys'12). He currently serves as associate editor for the IEEE Transactions on Automatic Control and his latest book, on verification and control of hybrid systems, was published by Springer in 2009.

Performance Period: 09/15/2010 - 08/31/2014
Institution: University of California-Los Angeles
Sponsor: National Science Foundation
Award Number: 1035916