Computer-Aided Design for Safe Autonomous Vehicles

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Real-Time and Embedded Systems Lab (mLAB)
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CPS Auto
CPS Model-Based Design
Computer Engineering
Electrical and Computer Engineering
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This paper details the design of an autonomous vehicle CAD toolchain, which captures formal descriptions of driving scenarios in order to develop a safety case for an autonomous vehicle (AV). Rather than focus on a particular component of the AV, like adaptive cruise control, the toolchain models the end-to-end dynamics of the AV in a formal way suitable for testing and verification. First, a domain-specific language capable of describing the scenarios that occur in the day-to-day operation of an AV is defined. The language allows the description and composition of traffic participants, and the specification of formal correctness requirements. A scenario described in this language is an executable that can be processed by a specification-guided automated test generator (bug hunting), and by an exhaustive reachability tool. The toolchain allows the user to exploit and integrate the strengths of both testing and reachability, in a way not possible when each is run alone. Finally, given a particular execution of the scenario that violates the requirements, a visualization tool can display this counter-example and generate labeled sensor data. The effectiveness of the approach is demonstrated on five autonomous driving scenarios drawn from a collection of 36 scenarios that account for over 95% of accidents nationwide. These case studies demonstrate robustness-guided verification heuristics to reduce analysis time, counterexample visualization for identifying controller bugs in both the discrete decision logic and low-level analog (continuous) dynamics, and identification of modeling errors that lead to unrealistic environment behavior.

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