Conference article

AdvancingModel-Based Design by Modeling Approximations of Computational Semantics

Pieter J. Mosterman
Design Automation Department, MathWorks, USA / School of Computer Science, McGill University, Canada

Justyna Zander
Harvard Humanitarian Initiative, Harvard University, USA

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Published in: Proceedings of the 4th International Workshop on Equation-Based Object-Oriented Modeling Languages and Tools; Zurich; Switzerland; September 5; 2011

Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings 56:1, p. 3-7

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Published: 2011-11-03

ISBN: 978-91-7519-825-5

ISSN: 1650-3686 (print), 1650-3740 (online)


Over the past decades; engineered systems have increasingly come to rely on embedded computation in order to include advanced and sophisticated features. The unparallelled flexibility of software has been a blessing for implementing functionality with a complexity that could not have been imagined heretofore. One important manifestation of this is in the use of software as the universal system integration mechanism. With the increasing use; however; has come a suite of difficulties in effectively employing software engineering practices because (i) C (the language of choice in embedded software implementation) is very close to the hardware implementation and (ii) software engineering methods typically only consider logical correctness; irrespective of critical characteristics for embedded computation (e.g.; response time). To address these problems; Model-Based Design helps raise the level of abstraction while accounting for such critical characteristics. The corresponding models are designed using high-level formalisms such as block diagrams and state transition diagrams whose meaning is particularly intuitive because of their executable nature. The necessity to support increasingly complicated language elements; however; has caused the underlying execution engine to explode in complexity. As a result; the meaning of the high-level formalisms exists almost exclusively by merit of simulation. This paper attempts to present the challenges faced by the current state of Model-Based Design tools and outlines a solution approach by modeling the execution engine.


Model-Based Design; Cyber-Physical Systems; Modeling; Simulation; Computation; Numerical Integration; Hybrid Systems


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