Not in Kansas anymore: Real-Time for Modern Cyber-Physical Systems

Linh Thi Xuan Phan
Associate Professor of Computer and Information Science
University of Pennsylvania
Zouheir Rezki

Join us on Zoom:

Cyber-physical systems -- such as autonomous vehicles, factory control networks, medical devices, and power plants -- interact directly with the physical world. Because of this, they need to be highly reliable and maintain guaranteed response times, otherwise the result can be physical damage or even loss of life. A rich body of research has been developed to help achieve this high reliability and to analyze worst-case response times.

HOWEVER, the CPS landscape has been changing rapidly, and current, highly-complex CPS devices are very different from the much simpler devices for which the theory was originally developed. The result is that much of the textbook technology falls short - by failing to support modern hardware features, ignoring new threats, and sometimes even delivering results that are just plain wrong!

In most cases, there is no 'easy' solution to these problems: we need a new theory that can properly support modern hardware features and meet new demands (such as runtime adaptivity), and new defenses that can keep these systems running despite new types of threats. In this talk, I will give an overview of these trends and my group's current work in this space.

Speaker Bio: Linh Thi Xuan Phan is an Associate Professor of Computer and Information Science at the University of Pennsylvania. She works in cyber-physical systems and distributed systems. Her research focuses on theoretical foundations and systems techniques for safety, performance, and security guarantees. She has received a number of awards, including best paper and outstanding paper awards at RTAS and RTNS, as well as best-paper award nominations at RTSS, EMSOFT and ICRA; she is also a recipient of Penn's Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching. Phan has served on the Executive Committee of the IEEE Technical Committee on Real-Time Systems and the Steering Committees for RTSS, RTAS, and EMSOFT, and she recently was the Secretary-Treasurer of ACM SIGBED.