2 An Overview of Reactis
A model-based design environment involving Reactis, Simulink and Stateflow
is depicted in Figure 1. Reactis contains
three core components: Tester, which provides automated test generation
from models; Simulator, which enables you to visualize model execution to
debug models and track coverage; and Validator, which offers automated
checks of Simulink models for violations of user-specified
requirements. The remainder of this section describes these components in
|Figure 1: Reactis is used in a model-based design process using Simulink/Stateflow models.
Reactis is a standalone application that reads the .mdl/.slx files produced by the MathWorks environment.|
2.1 Reactis Tester
Figure 2 shows that Reactis Tester offers automatic
test generation from Simulink models. The generated test suites provide
comprehensive coverage of different test coverage metrics - including the
Modified Condition/Decision Coverage (MC/DC) test coverage measure
mandated by the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in its DO-178/B
guidelines - while at the same time minimizing redundancy in tests. Each test case
in a test suite consists of a sequence of inputs fed into the model as well as
the responses to those inputs generated by the model.
The automatically generated test data may then be used for a variety of
purposes, including the following:
- Implementation conformance.
- The tests may be applied to source-code
implementations of models to ensure conformance with model behavior.
- Model testing and debugging.
- The tests may be run on the models
themselves to detect runtime errors and to study and revise model behavior.
- Regression testing of models.
- The tests may be run on a new versions
of models to flag differing behaviors in new versions.
- Reverse engineering of models from source.
- Tests may be generated from
models derived from legacy code in order to check conformance between model and
Reactis Tester enables engineers to maximize the effectiveness of testing while
reducing the time actually spent on testing.
|Figure 2: Reactis Tester automatically generates
comprehensive yet compact test suites.|
The structure of a Tester-generated test is shown in Figure 3.
A test is constructed by simulating the model and capturing the top-level
inputs and outputs. A test may be viewed as a matrix in which each row
corresponds to either an inport or outport and each column represents a
simulation step. A test suite consists of a set of tests. When running a
test suite, the model is reset to its initial state after one test
completes and before the next test begins.
|Figure 3: Structure of a Reactis-generated test.|
Test suites are constructed by simulating a model and recording the input and
output values at each step. The model computes the outputs at each step, but
several approaches are possible for selecting the input values to drive
simulation. The input data could be captured during field testing or constructed
manually by an engineer, but these are expensive tasks. Alternatively, the
inputs could be generated randomly; however, this approach yields tests with
Reactis Tester employs a patented technique called guided simulation to generate
quality input data automatically. The idea behind this approach is to use
algorithms and heuristics to automatically generate inputs that cause coverage
targets (i.e. model elements that the user wants to ensure are executed at least
once) that have not yet been covered to be executed. Reactis currently allows
you to track several different classes of coverage targets (also called
coverage criteria or coverage metrics). Some of the test coverage metrics
supported by Reactis involve only Simulink, some are specific to Stateflow, and
the remaining are generic in the sense that they include targets within the
Simulink, Stateflow, or C code portions of a model.
- Conditional subsystems. Branches of the following
blocks: Dead Zone, Logical Operator, MinMax, Multiport Switch, Relational
Operator, Saturation, Switch. Lookup tables.
- States. Condition actions. Transition actions.
Child State Exit via Parent Transition (CSEPT).
- Decisions from logic blocks in Simulink, transition
segments in Stateflow, or in C code a boolean-valued expression used to
determine which execution path to follow. Conditions (the atomic
predicates that are the building blocks of decisions). Modified
Condition/Decision Coverage (MC/DC) targets. Multiple Condition Coverage
(MCC) targets. Boundary Values of top-level inputs.
2.2 Reactis Simulator
Reactis Simulator enables you to visualize model execution and debug Simulink
models. Simulator’s user interface is similar to those of traditional
debuggers from programming languages: it allows you to step through the
execution of models by hand as well as set break points. Simulator also
supports reverse execution, the replay of tests generated by Reactis Tester, the
graphical display of different coverage metrics, the display of data item
values, and the capability to fine-tune automatically generated test suites.
Stepping between the Simulink, Stateflow, and C code portions of a model
2.3 Reactis Validator
Reactis Validator performs automated searches of models for violations of
user-specified requirements. If Validator finds a violation, it returns a test that
leads to the problem. This test may then be executed in Reactis Simulator to
gain an understanding of the sequence of events that leads to the problem.
Validator enables the early detection of design errors and inconsistencies and
reduces the effort required for design reviews. Some checks that may be
performed with Validator include the following.
Will a car’s brake pedal always deactivate the cruise-control?
- Will a plane’s thrust reversers ever engage when the aircraft is airborne?
- Will a medical device ever deliver an unsafe dose of radiation?