Model Counting for Reactive Systems

Hazem Torfah

Model counting is the problem of computing the number of solutions for a logical formula. In the last few years, it has been primarily studied for propositional logic, and has been shown to be useful in many applications. In planning, for example, propositional model counting has been used to compute the robustness of a plan in an incomplete domain. In information-flow control, model counting has been applied to measure the amount of information leaked by a security-critical system.

In this thesis, we introduce the model counting problem for linear-time properties, and show its applications in formal verification. In the same way propositional model counting generalizes the satisfiability problem for propositional logic, counting models for linear-time properties generalizes the emptiness problem for languages over infinite words to one that asks for the number of words in a language. The model counting problem, thus, provides a foundation for quantitative extensions of model checking, where not only the existence of computations that violate the specification is determined, but also the number of such violations.

We solve the model counting problem for the prominent class of omega-regular properties. We present algorithms for solving the problem for different classes of properties, and show the advantages of our algorithms in comparison to indirect approaches based on encodings into propositional logic. We further show how model counting can be used for solving a variety of quantitative problems in formal verification, including probabilistic model checking, quantitative information-flow in security-critical systems, and the synthesis of approximate implementations for reactive systems.

PhD Thesis.