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at - Automatisierungstechnik

Methoden und Anwendungen der Steuerungs-, Regelungs- und Informationstechnik

[AT - Automation Technology: Methods and Applications of Control, Regulation, and Information Technology

Editor-in-Chief: Jumar, Ulrich

IMPACT FACTOR 2018: 0.500

CiteScore 2018: 0.60

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.211
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.532

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Volume 64, Issue 3


Automatic test case generation from requirements for industrial cyber-physical systems

Automatische Testfallgenerierung aus den Anforderungen für industrielle cyber-physische Systeme

Roopak Sinha
  • Corresponding author
  • School of Engineering, Computer and Mathematical Sciences, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand
  • Email
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Cheng Pang / Gerardo Santillán Martínez / Valeriy Vyatkin
  • Department of Electrical Engineering and Automation, Aalto University, Espoo 02150, Finland
  • SRT, Luleå Tekniska Universitet, Luleå, Sweden
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
Published Online: 2016-03-11 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/auto-2015-0075


Industrial cyber-physical systems require complex software to orchestrate heterogeneous mechatronic components and control physical processes. This software is typically developed and refined iteratively in a model-driven fashion. Testing such multi-dimensional systems is extremely difficult as subsequent refinements may not correspond accurately with previous system models.

We propose a framework to generate test-cases from functional requirements at all stages in the model-driven engineering process. A requirements ontology initially created during requirements engineering is iteratively refined such that test-cases can be generated automatically. An industrial water process system case study illustrates the strengths of the proposed formalism. We also present an automatic test-case generation and execution tool called REBATE (REquirements Based Automatic Testing Engine).


Industrielle cyber-physische Systeme erfordern komplexe Software, um heterogene mechatronische Komponenten zur Kontrolle physikalischer Prozesse aufeinander abzustimmen. Diese Software wird in der Regel mit Hilfe modellgetriebener Methoden entwickelt und iterativ verfeinert. Testen solcher mehrdimensionalen Systeme ist äußerst schwierig, da die Systemmodelle unter Umständen nicht genau mit nachfolgenden Verfeinerungen übereinstimmen.

Wir schlagen ein Framework vor zur Generierung von Testfällen aus den funktionellen Anforderungen für alle Phasen des modellgetriebenen Softwareentwicklungsprozesses. Während der Anforderungserhebung wird eine Anforderungsontologie erzeugt und dann iterativ so angepasst, dass Testfälle automatisch generiert werden können. Eine Fallstudie über eine industrielle Wasserverarbeitung veranschaulicht die Stärken des vorgeschlagenen Formalismus. Wir präsentieren außerdem ein Tool zur automatischen Testfallgenerierung und -ausführung namens REBATE (REquirements Based Automatic Testing Engine).

Schlagwörter: Testfallgenerierung; Testfallerzeugung; Anforderungen; Modellgetriebene Softwareentwicklung; Ontologie; CESAR; Modellbasiertes Testen

Keywords: Test-case generation; requirements; model-driven engineering; ontologies; CESAR; model-based testing

About the article

Roopak Sinha

Roopak's main research interest is in next-generation formal frameworks for designing large-scale embedded software. He is interested in formal methods for requirements engineering, model-driven design and formalised architectures, and tools and algorithms for formal verification of highly distributed software. He works in sub-domains like Internet-of-Things (IoT), industrial automation systems, intelligent transportation systems (ITS), and smart homes and hospitals.

School of Engineering, Computer and Mathematical Sciences, 2-14 Wakefield Street, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand

Cheng Pang

Cheng's current research focuses on various engineering aspects of industrial cyber-physical systems. This includes model-driven engineering approaches, heterogeneous closed-loop modelling architectures, and applications of ontology and formal methods in the development of distributed control for industrial automation systems.

Department of Electrical Engineering and Automation, Aalto University, TUAS Building, Otaniementie 17, Espoo 02150, Finland

Gerardo Santillán Martínez

Gerardo received his B.Sc. degree in Mechatronics Engineering from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) and his M.Sc. degree in Machine Automation from the Tampere University of Technology where he also worked as researcher for the Factory Automation Systems and Technologies laboratory. He is currently working towards a Ph.D. at the Information Technology in Industrial Automation research group at Aalto University in Espoo, Finland. His research is focussed on predictive online simulation systems.

Department of Electrical Engineering and Automation, Aalto University, TUAS Building, Otaniementie 17, Espoo 02150, Finland

Valeriy Vyatkin

Valeriy Vyatkin is on joint appointment as Chaired Professor (Ämnesföreträdare) of Dependable Computation and Communication Systems at Luleå University of Technology, Sweden, and Professor of Information and Computer Engineering in Automation, Aalto University, Finland. Previously he has been with Cambridge University, U.K., as a visiting scholar, and on permanent academic appointments with The University of Auckland, New Zealand, Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg, Germany, and with Taganrog State University of Radio Engineering, and postdoc at Nagoya Institute of Technology, Japan. Current research interests of Dr. Vyatkin include dependable distributed automation and industrial informatics, software engineering for industrial automation systems, distributed architectures and multi-agent systems applied in various industry sectors, including Smart Grid, material handling, building management systems, and reconfigurable manufacturing. He is also active in research on dependability provisions for industrial automation systems, such as methods of formal verification and validation, and theoretical algorithms for improving their performance. Dr. Vyatkin was awarded the Andrew P. Sage Award for the best IEEE Transactions paper in 2012.

Department of Electrical Engineering and Automation, Aalto University, TUAS, Otaniemantie 17, 02150, Espoo, Finland; and SRT, Luleå Tekniska Universitet, Luleå, Sweden

Accepted: 2016-01-11

Received: 2015-10-16

Published Online: 2016-03-11

Published in Print: 2016-03-28

Citation Information: at - Automatisierungstechnik, Volume 64, Issue 3, Pages 216–230, ISSN (Online) 2196-677X, ISSN (Print) 0178-2312, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/auto-2015-0075.

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