Model Based Engineering (MBE) Tools

Model-based Engineering (MBE) utilizes models as a central and indispensable aspect of a product’s lifecycle including concept, development, deployment, operation, and maintenance. The use of models over document-centric practices offers several potential benefits such as improved communication, quality, and productivity that are the result of linked interactions conveying precise, detailed information, and automation techniques that allow a degree of analysis and specificity that is not possible with textual documentation. 

Adventium has developed MBE tools that leverage the widely used Architecture Analysis & Design Language (AADL) and the associated Open Source AADL Tool Environment (OSATE). For more AADL-based tools, please see https://wiki.sei.cmu.edu/aadl

The following Adventium developed tools (in prototype form) are available:

FASTAR™ - Integrated Timing Analysis Tools for Virtual Integration: FASTAR is a collaborative framework of timing tools that support virtual integration of complex cyber physical systems. FASTAR, provided as a set of OSATE plugins, currently includes capabilities for three classes of resource and timing analysis:

  • Utilization analysis is performed on preliminary models that declare demand and capacity budgets, using metrics such as MIPS or Bytes. Virtual resources are supported, e.g. a virtual processor has both a capacity (for software it hosts) and a demand (that it places on underlying hardware). The tool provides features to manage uncertainty, such as sensitivity analysis and specification of reserves.
  • Schedulability analysis is performed on more detailed models that include information about individual threads, execution times, dispatch rates, and data flows. The framework allows different third-party analysis tools suited for different workload patterns and scheduling algorithms (e.g. a tool capable of analyzing switched networks, a tool capable of analyzing ARINC 653 modules) to be integrated and used together for overall system end-to-end analysis.
  • Schedule generation uses the schedule generation capabilities of integrated third-party tools for different subsystems. The initial FASTAR release automatically generates ARINC 653 schedules, see below.

Rapid Prototyping for ARINC 653: The ARINC 653 rapid prototyping tools are two OSATE plugins: a schedule generation tool and a tool to output data in a format that can be used to configure LynxOS-178. The schedule generation tool uses timing requirements properties declared by the user in the AADL model (e.g. thread periods and deadlines, maximum latencies for flows through multiple partitions) and generates thread priorities and a module partition schedule. These are output as an AADL extension declaration of the user-declared system, where this generated extension contains AADL core standard and AADL ARINC 653 annex property declarations of the generated scheduling decisions. With other AADL ARINC 653 property declarations, this can be input to the LynxOS-178 specific tooling. A goal is that the generated AADL schedule data can also be input to tools under development by the Software Engineering Institute to format configuration data for VxWorks 653 and Deos 653.

Multiple Independent Levels of Security (MILS) Analysis Tool: The MILS Analysis tool is a plugin to OSATE that allows the system to be assessed early in its design phase for compliance with the MILS approach. The tool analyzes the AADL model to ensure that all mission components connected directly operate at the same security level and that mission components connected via a Cross Domain Solution (CDS) component operate at the levels approved for the CDS component. Mission components violating these constraints are flagged, and the modeler can either revise the model or introduce additional CDS components to remove the violation. 

Architecture Framework for Fault Management Assessment and Design (AFFMAD): AFFMAD provides systematic fault management (FM) trade space exploration during concept development for complex cyber-physical systems. AFFMAD is an AADL-based FM trade space exploration toolkit that supports FM design decisions by evaluating complex architecture alternatives to maximize dependability, availability, and integrity, while minimizing factors such as energy expenditure, risk, latency, and cost.

Additional Resources: For more information, please contact us at fastar-info@adventiumlabs.com. See the following for additional information: