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Axini develops tools for model based testing (MBT) and model based software engineering (MBSE). Model based testing is a software testing approach in which test cases are automatically generated and executed from a model, a formal specification of the system under test. This approach allows for a high degree of test automation and more thorough testing.

This research will be part of FormaSig, a collaboration between ProRail, Deutsche Bahn, Eindhoven University of Technology and the University of Twente. The goal of FormaSig is to promote the use of formal methods in the specification of future railway standards.

FormaSig is a very interesting project. Axini applies formal methods to the ProRail mission critical systems. The systems the FormaSig project is looking at are the train protection systems that must adhere to the highest safety levels (so called SIL levels).

There are several possibilities in this project including model checking, model based testing and model learning. It is possible to do (part of) the work at ProRail. You will work together with the domain experts of ProRail and participate in active research. The supervisors of Axini can get you up to speed in the project, help you define a suitable research topic and offer you the knowledge and inspiration that allow you to make an impact on this real-world case.

Train protection systems are in the premier division of safety systems. Interesting for Axini is to learn what ProRail needs to model train protection systems. Are there concepts that we need to add or refine in our toolset? Is there need for new theory to be developed? We want to push theory and practice to make this possible.

Possible research questions

There are several puzzles and research questions that students can work on.

Translation of SysML models
Automatic translation of SysML models (that the FormaSig project uses) to Axini (AML) models. We are curious if that is possible and how to do this. Tobias Bachman already did some preliminary work and analysis on this topic.
Model based testing of FormaSig systems
Apply and evaluate model based testing on one of the saftey critical systems in the FormaSig project.

Recent work

Recent work at Axini on this topic: