Computer Science: Fully Funded EPSRC and Siemens PhD Scholarship: Proof checking for SMT-solving and its application in the railway domain
Funding providers: Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP) and Siemens
Subject areas: Computer Science
Project start date:
- 1 October 2022 (Enrolment open from mid-September); or
- 1 January 2023
- Dr Monika Seisenberger
- Dr Anton Setzer
Aligned programme of study: PhD in Computer Science
Mode of study: Full-time
Satisfiability-modulo-theory (SMT) solvers are state-of-the-art tools for verifying computer programs and are applied in Industry as part of quality assurance processes. They do this in a formal approach for solving problems using a set of theories and a search algorithm to prove the correctness of software. One deficiency of SMT-solving is that there is no standardised format for SMT-proofs and therefore no standard approach to checking their validity. Conversely, SAT-solvers (which SMT-solvers are based on) are more mature and have such a standardised proof checking approach; therefore one can envisage a similar strategy for SMT-solving. The proposed PhD-project aims to build such a checker and conduct industrial case-studies, together with Siemens. Siemens is interested in applying SMT-solving to the design and verification of highly complex Railway control systems. The combination of SMT-solving and proof checking will lead to improvements of both, efficiency and robustness, and will produce a highly reliable verification solution that can replace and improve more traditional forms of verification and testing. Thus, utilizing proof-checked SMT-solving will reduce system development time and thus save resources and at the same time increase integrity.
Candidates must normally hold an undergraduate degree at 2.1 level in Computer Science, Mathematics or a closely related discipline, or an appropriate master’s degree with a minimum overall grade at ‘Merit’ (or Non-UK equivalent as defined by Swansea University).
English Language requirements: If applicable – IELTS 6.5 overall (with at least 6.0 in each individual component) or Swansea recognised equivalent.
This scholarship is open to candidates of any nationality.
This scholarship covers the full cost of tuition fees and an annual stipend of £16,062.
Additional research expenses will also be available.
Please visit our website for more information.