Verification of Hierarchical State/Event Systems Using Reusability and Compositionality

  • Gerd Behrmann
  • Kim G. Larsen
  • Henrik R. Andersen
  • Henrik Hulgaard
  • Jørn Lind-Nielsen
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 1579)


We investigate techniques for verifying hierarchical systems, i.e., finite state systems with a nesting capability. The straightforward way of analysing a hierarchical system is to first flatten it into an equivalent non-hierarchical system and then apply existing finite state system verification techniques. Though conceptually simple, flattening is severely punished by the hierarchical depth of a system. To alleviate this problem, we develop a technique that exploits the hierarchical structure to reuse earlier reachability checks of superstates to conclude reachability of substates. We combine the reusability technique with the successful compositional technique of [13] and investigate the combination experimentally on industrial systems and hierarchical systems generated according to our expectations to real systems. The experimental results are very encouraging: whereas a flattening approach degrades in performance with an increase in the hierarchical depth (even when applying the technique of [13]), the new approach proves not only insensitive to the hierarchical depth, but even leads to improved performance as the depth increases.


Model Check Serial State Hierarchical System Reachability Analysis Primitive State 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gerd Behrmann
    • 1
  • Kim G. Larsen
    • 1
  • Henrik R. Andersen
    • 2
  • Henrik Hulgaard
    • 2
  • Jørn Lind-Nielsen
    • 2
  1. 1.BRICSAalborg UniversityDenmark
  2. 2.Department of Information TechnologyDTUDenmark

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