Skip to main content

Methods for behavior descriptions of structure-complex Petri nets


Petri net language is a powerful tool for describing dynamic behaviors of physical systems. However, it is not easy to obtain the language expression for a given Petri net especially a structure-complex net. In this paper, we first analyze the behaviors of S-nets, which are structure-simple. With the decomposition method based on a given index function on the place set, a given structure-complex Petri net can be decomposed into a set of structure-simple S-nets. With the language relationships between the original system and the decomposed subnets, an algorithm to obtain the language expression of a given structure-complex net system is presented, which benefits the analysis of physical systems based on the Petri net language.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.


  1. M. Hack, Decidability Questions for Petri Nets, Dept. of Elect. Eng., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts, December 1975.

    Google Scholar 

  2. J. Peterson, Petri Net Theory and the Modeling of Systems, PrenticeHall, Inc. Englewood Cliffs, N.J., 1981.

    Google Scholar 

  3. M. Jantzen, On the Hierarchy of Petri Net Languages, R. A. I. R. 0. Theory Inform., Vol. 13, No.1, pp. 19–30,1979.

    MATH  Google Scholar 

  4. M. Jantzen, Language Theory of Petri Nets, LNCS, Springer-Verlag, Vol.254, No.l, pp.397–412, 1987.

  5. M. Hack, Petri Net Languages, Computation Structures Group Memo 124 , Project MAC, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts, June 1975.

    Google Scholar 

  6. V. K. Garg, M.T. Ragunath, Concurrent regular expressions and their relationship to Petri nets, Theoretical Computer Science, Vol. 96, No. 2, 258–304,1992.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  7. Wu Zhehui, Petri Net Description of Pumping Lama-a Set of Conditions for Determining the Type of Petri Net language, Chinese J. of Computers, Vol. 17, No.11, pp.852–858,1994.

    Google Scholar 

  8. J. Hopcroft, J. Ullman, Introduction to Automata Theory Languages and Computation, Addison-Wesley, Reading, MA. 1979.

    MATH  Google Scholar 

  9. Q. Zeng, Z. Wu, Synchronous Intersection Operation of Petri Net Languages, Mini-Micro Systems, Vol.25, No.2, pp.216–220,2004.

    Google Scholar 

  10. Q. Zeng, Behavior descriptions of structure-complex Petri nets based on synchronous composition, J. of Software, Vol.15, No. 3, pp. 327–337,2004.

    MATH  Google Scholar 

  11. H. Kwang, Generalized Petri Net Reduction Method, IEEE Trans. on Systems, Man and Cybernetics, Vol. 17, No.2, 1987.

  12. I. Suzuki, A Method for Stepwise Refinement and Abstraction of Petri Nets, J. Of Computer and System Sciences, Vol. 27, No. 1, pp. 51–76,1983.

    Article  MATH  Google Scholar 

  13. Q. Zeng, Z. Wu, Decomposition Method of Petri Net Based on the Index of Places, Computer Science, Vol.29, No. 4, pp. 15–17, 2002.

    Google Scholar 

  14. Q. Zeng, Z. Wu, Language behavior description of structure-complex Petri net based on decomposition, J. of System Engineering, Vol. 19, No.3, pp.231–237,2004.

    Google Scholar 

  15. C. Yuan, Principle of Petri net, Publishing House of Electronics Industry, Beijing, 1998.

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Additional information

This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No.60173053 & No.60274063) and the Excellent Young Scientist Foundation of Shandong Province of China (No.02BS069).

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Zeng, Q., Wu, Z. Methods for behavior descriptions of structure-complex Petri nets. J. Control Theory Appl. 2, 93–98 (2004).

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: