Xiaohong Chen

Name: Chen Xiaohong

Research Title: Modeling, analysis, design and verification of cyber-physical systems

Key Contact Details: Xiaohong.Chen@mail.bcu.ac.uk

About the Project: Modern applications of computing involve heterogeneous interactions among digital components, physical plans and smart devices. Examples include healthcare, industrial control systems, traffic control systems, etc. Neither is traditional top down nor the bottom up development approach enough to support the development of such complex cyber-physical systems (CPS). The project will research modelling, analysis, design, validation and verification of cyber-physical component systems (CPCS). This includes the extension of existing component based and coordination oriented modelling theories, techniques and tools to CPCS. The usefulness of a theoretical framework and generic techniques will be demonstrated by practical applications in areas such as healthcare, mobile communication, and transport.

Research Activities: Researchers in software engineering have proposed many models to describe behaviours of all kinds of systems in various application domains. With regard to the development of software and software engineering, we see a trend that these systems merge with one another and become subsystems of an integrated one. This research will begin with some case studies about real-world cyber-physical systems applications in various domains such as smart meters and pacemakers. This aims to find out the coordination theory and technology that are missing in the integration of those subsystems or cyber-physical components. Furthermore, the research seeks a uniform framework in which different models for different subsystems and components can co-exist and collaborate with each other in a good manner.

Other interests: Xiaohong has many interests. Currently, he is interested in the game of Go. Go is a strategic board game involving two players originated more than 2,500 years ago, with a state space over 10^761 (compared to the 10^120 as in chess). The name “Go” comes from its Japanese name, which actually means “encircling game” literally. Therefore, the objective of Go is to occupy a larger territory than the opponent when the game ends. Go is unique. It is very different from any other board game. Also it is very difficult to be good at it. Computer players (such as the Deep Blue) have beaten human beings in chess decades ago, while the best computer Go program is still much weaker than human players. On the other hand, Go is quite easy to learn. It has only one rule, therefore everyone is able to learn it and start playing it within ten minutes.