Trustworthiness of cyberphysical systems (CPS) is an essential concern since such systems are routinely employed in critical settings. Currently many components of CPS are built without sufficiently formalized and analyzed properties and guarantees. Such inadequacies in the system design phase can lead to catastrophic consequences in operations, as they are interconnected to open networks and become increasingly exposed to security attacks. There is a pressing need to evaluate both cyber- and physical systems together and holistically for a rapidly growing number of applications using simulation and emulation in a realistic environment, which brings realistic attacks against the defensive capabilities of CPS.

To address this need, this project proposes to build iSEE - integrated Simulation and Emulation platform for security Experimentation, as a software supporting research infrastructure used for cyber security research and development. iSEE allows for the concurrent modeling, experimentation and evaluation of CPS that range from a fully simulated to a fully implemented system. iSEE has two major components: 1) modeling environment for system specification and experiment configuration and 2) run-time environment that supports experiment execution. iSEE employs the Model-Integrated-Computing (MIC) approach, which explicitly uses models throughout the experiment environments and integrates them at the domain-specific model level. Though iSEE will be primarily used in the CPS domain, the meta-models for system-of-systems modeling and security attack modeling will be developed at a fundamental level, such that they will be generalizable to many domains with similar security assessment needs. iSEE will provide CPS researchers a tool to evaluate CPS with respect to their security properties. It will set the stage for building security as a key property in early CPS design and promote interdisciplinary research and education between computer science and other engineering domains.

Project Report

As CPS become more complex through distributed architectures and expanded mission capability, it becomes more challenging to formally analyze the performance, stability, safety and security properties of their behaviors. There is a pressing need to evaluate both cyber- and physical systems together and holistically for a rapidly growing number of applications, such as networked control systems and smart grids under their realistic running environments using simulation and/or emulation. Without the support from appropriate tools and experiment environments, this evaluation process can be extremely time-consuming and error-prone, if possible at all. This project developed an integrated environment of modeling tools, simulation tools, and emulation platforms, which provides the following capabilities. 1) Realistic assessment, where CPS work together with security perimeters, such as intrusion detection systems, that are deployed on real distributed networking environments to defend against realistically emulated network attacks; 2) Early assessment, where the security and safety properties of CPS can be evaluated in its early design phase, before a fully implemented system is available; 3) Automatic and rapidly configured experiments, where CPS and security attack behaviors can be quickly specified and woven into the system running environment; 4) Support for convenient system measurement and holistic CPS behavior analysis. Specifically, we built iSEE – integrated Simulation and Emulation platform for security Experimentation, as a "software supporting research infrastructure used for cyber security research and development." iSEE allows for the concurrent modeling, experimentation and evaluation of CPS that range from a fully simulated to a fully implemented system. iSEE has two major components: 1) a modeling environment for system specification and experiment configuration and 2) a run-time environment that supports experiment execution. iSEE employs the Model-Integrated-Computing (MIC) approach, which explicitly uses models throughout the experiment environments and integrates them at the domain-specific model level. The run-time environment integrates multiple simulation tools and the DETERlab testbed. It provides time synchronization and data communication services and coordinates the execution of the security experiment across multiple simulation and emulation platforms. The developed software tool is open source and being used by various CPS projects at multiple U.S. and international institutes.

Agency
National Science Foundation (NSF)
Institute
Division of Advanced CyberInfrastructure (ACI)
Type
Standard Grant (Standard)
Application #
1127396
Program Officer
Kevin L. Thompson
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
2011-08-15
Budget End
2014-07-31
Support Year
Fiscal Year
2011
Total Cost
$449,576
Indirect Cost
Name
Vanderbilt University Medical Center
Department
Type
DUNS #
City
Nashville
State
TN
Country
United States
Zip Code
37240