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Tight WCRT Analysis for Synchronous C Programs

Accurate estimation of the tick length of a synchronous program is essential for efficient and predictable implementations that are devoid of timing faults. The techniques to determine the tick length statically are classified as worst case reaction time (WCRT) analysis. While a plethora of techniques exist for worst case execution time (WCET) analysis of procedural programs, there are only a handful of techniques for determining the WCRT value of synchronous programs. Most of these techniques produce overestimates and hence are unsuitable for the design of systems that are predictable while being also efficient. In this paper, we present an approach for the accurate estimation of the exact WCRT value of a synchronous program, called its tight WCRT value, using model checking. For our input specifications we have selected a synchronous C based language called PRET-C that is designed for programming Precision Timed (PRET) architectures. We then present an approach for static WCRT analysis of these programs via an intermediate format called TCCFG. This intermediate representation is then compiled to produce the input for the model checker. Experimental results that compare our approach to existing approaches demonstrate the benefits of the proposed approach. The proposed approach, while presented for PRET-C is also applicable for WCRT analysis of Esterel using simple adjustments to the generated model. The proposed approach thus paves the way for a generic approach for determining the tight WCRT value of synchronous programs at compile time.

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