Research Post

Real-Time Formal Verification of Autonomous Systems With An FPGA


Hamilton-Jacobi reachability analysis is a powerful technique used to verify the safety of autonomous systems. This method is very good at handling non-linear system dynamics with disturbances and flexible set representations. A drawback to this approach is that it suffers from the curse of dimensionality, which prevents real-time deployment on safety-critical systems. In this paper, we show that a customized hardware design on a Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) could accelerate 4D grid-based Hamilton-Jacobi (HJ) reachability analysis up to 16 times compared to an optimized implementation and 142 times compared to MATLAB ToolboxLS on a 16-thread CPU. Our design can overcome the complex data access pattern while taking advantage of the parallel nature of the HJ PDE computation. Because of this, we are able to achieve real-time formal verification with a 4D car model by re-solving the HJ PDE at a frequency of 5Hz on the FPGA as the environment changes. The latency of our computation is deterministic, which is crucial for safetycritical systems. Our approach presented here can be applied to different systems dynamics, and moreover, potentially leveraged for higher dimensions systems. We also demonstrate obstacle avoidance with a robot car in a changing environment.

Latest Research Papers

Connect with the community

Get involved in Alberta's growing AI ecosystem! Speaker, sponsorship, and letter of support requests welcome.

Explore training and advanced education

Curious about study options under one of our researchers? Want more information on training opportunities?

Harness the potential of artificial intelligence

Let us know about your goals and challenges for AI adoption in your business. Our Investments & Partnerships team will be in touch shortly!