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Journal Articles Distributed Computing Year : 2016

Formal verification of mobile robot protocols

Beatrice Bérard
Laure Millet
Maria Potop-Butucaru
Yann Thierry-Mieg
Sébastien Tixeuil


Mobile robot networks emerged in the past few years as a promising distributed computing model. Existing work in the literature typically ensures the correctness of mobile robot protocols via ad hoc handwritten proofs, which, in the case of asynchronous execution models, are both cumbersome and error-prone. Our contribution is twofold. We first propose a formal model to describe mobile robot protocols operating in a discrete space i.e., with a finite set of possible robot positions, under synchrony and asynchrony assumptions. We translate this formal model into the DVE language, which is the input format of the model-checkers DiVinE and ITS tools, and formally prove the equivalence of the two models. We then verify several instances of two existing protocols for variants of the ring exploration in an asynchronous setting: exploration with stop and perpetual exclusive exploration. For the first protocol we refine the correctness bounds and for the second one, we exhibit a counter-example. This protocol is then modified and we establish the correctness of the new version with an inductive proof.
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Dates and versions

hal-01344903 , version 1 (13-12-2017)



Beatrice Bérard, Pascal Lafourcade, Laure Millet, Maria Potop-Butucaru, Yann Thierry-Mieg, et al.. Formal verification of mobile robot protocols. Distributed Computing, 2016, 29 (6), pp.459-487. ⟨10.1007/s00446-016-0271-1⟩. ⟨hal-01344903⟩
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