Software Engineering Institute
Multicore processors are widely used computers with many processor cores. They provide more processing capacity than unicore-chip computers and can execute many programs simultaneously. They make it possible for computers to do more, and could be of great value in the complex, cyber-physical systems used by the DoD. But the DoD has been reluctant to use multicore processors because they make computational timing difficult. In flight control or missile systems, for example, an unexpected delay translating sensor data into actuation can cause system instability and loss of control. The SEI’s Bjorn Andersson leads a project aiming to overcome this obstacle. The challenge is difficult, because timing is determined by many factors, some of which are undocumented. The approach of Andersson and his team rests on improved approaches to verification, parameter extraction, and configuration.