Introduction and objectives

Welcome to the webpage of the module “Cyber-Physical Computation”, edition 2022/2023.

Cyber-physical systems are networks of computational devices that closely interact with physical processes in order to reach a prescribed goal; for example a desired velocity, a desired temperature or, more generally, a desired energy level. They range from small medical devices, such as pacemakers and insulin pumps, to networks of autonomous vehicles and district-wide smart grids. This module is devoted to such systems.

The main learning goal is two-fold: 1) to prepare the student to a disciplined way of developing and analysing cyber-physical systems, by presenting their basic principles, adequate models of computation, and respective tools; 2) and to introduce the student to the main limitations of the area’s state-of-the-art – via pedagogical illustrations extracted from real world-scenarios involving e.g. cruise controllers, sampling algorithms, and timed variants of concurrent algorithms.

At the end of the module, the student will:



Assessment consist of the following items:


Rajeev Alur and David L Dill. A theory of timed automata. Theoretical computer science, 126(2):183--235, 1994. [ bib ]

Thomas A Henzinger. The theory of hybrid automata. In Verification of digital and hybrid systems, pages 265--292. Springer, 2000. [ bib ]

Glynn Winskel. The formal semantics of programming languages: an introduction. MIT press, 1993. [ bib ]

Sergey Goncharov, Renato Neves, and José Proença. Implementing hybrid semantics: From functional to imperative. In International Colloquium on Theoretical Aspects of Computing, pages 262--282. Springer, 2020. [ bib ]

Miran Lipovaca. Learn you a haskell for great good!: a beginner's guide. no starch press, 2011. [ bib ]

Philip Wadler. Monads for functional programming. In International School on Advanced Functional Programming, pages 24--52. Springer, 1995. [ bib ]

Supplementary bibliography

Bart Jacobs. Introduction to coalgebra, volume 59. Cambridge University Press, 2017. [ bib ]

Chucky Ellison and Grigore Rosu. An executable formal semantics of c with applications. ACM SIGPLAN Notices, 47(1):533--544, 2012. [ bib ]


The day and time for appointments is Wednesday afternoon (Renato Neves) or Thursday morning (José Proença). Please email us the day before if you wish to meet. If you prefer you can also just send an email with your questions to Renato Neves or to José Proença, or we can try to book an online meeting.