Pieter J. Mosterman

"... nothing is not a model ..." 
Pieter J. Mosterman
Adjunct Professor
School of Computer Science
McGill University
3480 University Street
Montréal, Québec
Canada H3A 2A7
Chief Research Scientist and Director
Advanced Research & Technology Office (MARTO)
3 Apple Hill Drive
Natick, MA 01760-2098
phone +1 (508) 647 77 65  
fax +1 (508) 647 70 12  
e-mail     pieter.mosterman@mathworks.com 
URL msdl.cs.mcgill.ca/people/mosterman 

Recent work on conected and collaborating machines:

"Model-Based Design for AI in IoT enabled Intelligent Systems,"
63rd IEEE International Midwest Symposium on Circuits and Systems (MWSCAS 2020), Springfield, Massachusetts, August 9-12, 2020
In the current technology landscape, data serves as a convergence point of concurrent trends: ubiquitous sensors are generating ever larger amounts of data; pervasively connected 5G networks are making this data available at rapidly increasing speeds and size; proliferation of compute platforms enables computational applications beyond control flow-oriented Harvard architectures; and sophisticated artificial intelligence and other algorithms are uniquely creating value from these reams of data and data intensive compute resources. These trends challenge the status quo in systems development and applications and create opportunity to predict, control, and optimize processes in new ways. How can Model-Based Design tools and workflows enable engineers to conceive, optimize, and implement these complex systems?
Zhan Tu, Anastasios Dimas, Mehmet Necip Kurt, Anastasia Mavrommati, Pieter J. Mosterman, Akshay Rajhans, and Roberto G. Valenti,
"A Simulator for Trading Traffic Privileges by Selfish Driving Cars," in Proceedings of the Spring Simulation Conference (SpringSim'20), virtual conference, May 18-21, 2020.
Connected autonomous vehicles are an important class of cyber-physical systems that are expected to have a major impact on society. Connectivity and autonomy in next-generation automobiles can be leveraged to improve safety and efficiency of our transportation systems. This paper presents a novel approach for incorporating individual driving preferences of vehicles in a computational framework to allow dynamic assignment and transfer of right-of-way privileges between cars as they navigate contested road segments. Dynamic priorities based on time of arrival estimates and positions in queues are used to unambiguously identify the owners of right-of-way privileges to conflict zones at any given time. A mechanism for trans- ferring the privileges from a unique rightful owner to another car, possibly incentivized by using a shared currency, is proposed. A simulation framework using MATLAB(R) is developed to enable rigorous study of this mechanism across tens of thousands of simulations.

Thoughts on Life

Current Events

The Strategic R&D Opportunities for 21st Century Cyber-Physical Systems report by the NIST Steering Committee for Foundations in Innovation for Cyber-Physical Systems is now available for download

The Smart Manufacturing Robotics Cyber-Physical System (distributed Towers of Hanoi) use case is now available for download from the MATLAB Central File Exchange

A book series from CRC Press on Computational Analysis, Synthesis, and Design of Dynamic Systems is now requesting proposals for book contributions. [pdf version]
Multi-Agent Systems: Simulation and Applications Discrete-Event Modeling and Simulation: A Practitioner's Approach Model-Based Design for Embedded Systems Discrete Event Modeling and Simulation: Theory and Applications Model-Based Testing for Embedded Systems Real-Time Simulation Technologies: Principles, Methodologies, and Applications Computation for Humanity: Information Technology to Advance Society


My research concentrates on modeling, in particular the use of information technology for modeling of dynamic systems. Specific interests are the abstraction of models, the formalism to define models, the efficient behavior generation from models, relations between models, and model transformation. Specific application areas of interest are computational simulation, code generation, fault detection and isolation, and training.

Since a decade or so, I have been working with Hans Vangheluwe (McGill University) in the field of Computer Automated Multiparadigm Modeling (CAMPaM) which has as main components: (i) multi-formalism modeling, (ii) formalism modeling, and (iii) multi-abstraction modeling. A key element of this is the modeling of model transformations, which has proven to be an enabler for automated tool support in the form of AToM3.

With a background in Artificial Intelligence, my cunning plan would have metamodeling allow us achieve some form of higher intelligence. Another long-standing, and perhaps less attainable, aspiration is to join the Charlatans Sans Frontières, founded by Oded Maler.


Currently, I am Associate Editor of

Before, I was Editor-in-Chief of

and Associate Editor of

Walk of Life

The twists and turns ...

2001 -

At present, I am a senior research scientist at MathWorks in Natick, MA, where I work on design automation technologies for Simulink®. In 2009, I was appointed Adjunct Professor at the School of Computer Science of McGill University.

From 2005 through 2008, I was Editor-in-Chief of SIMULATION: Transactions of the Society for Modeling and Simulation International for the Methodology section. The tenure of my co-Editor-in-Chief Helen Karatza (for the Applications section) and mine saw the impact factor almost double from 0.404 to 0.783. In 2009, I was awarded the Distinguished Service Award of The Society for Modeling & Simulation International (SCS) as Former Editor-in-Chief for SCS Journals.

1997 - 2001

Before, I was a Research Associate at the DLR Oberpfaffenhofen (German Aerospace Center) where I worked on a grant from the German Science Foundation (DFG) as part of the KONDISK program to investigate continuous/discrete, hybrid, systems. The specific focus of my research was object-oriented modeling of physical systems in the context of which Modelica was designed as the implementation language.

Proof of concept was modeling and simulation of the redundancy management of an elevator control system in aircraft. For this, I modeled the physics of the hydraulic actuator with HYBRSIM, a hybrid bond graph modeling and simulation tool that I wrote in Java. The paper "HYBRSIM - A Modeling and Simulation Environment for Hybrid Bond Graphs" on this tool was awarded the 2003 Donald Julius Groen Prize by IMechE.

1994 - 1997

In 1997, I graduated with a Ph.D. from Vanderbilt University under the direction of Gautam Biswas and Janos Sztipanovits where I studied physics based principles of discontinuities in piecewise continuous models. The underlying language for this extended bond graphs with syntactic and semantic elements to allow abrupt mode changes, resulting in hybrid bond graphs.

The application area was in qualitative reasoning for diagnosis of faults in engineered systems and my dissertation was entitled Hybrid Dynamic Systems: A hybrid bond graph modeling paradigm and its application in diagnosis. In 1998, Gautam Biswas and I received Editor Choice honors for the article "A Hybrid Modeling and Simulation Methodology for Dynamic Physical Systems" in SIMULATION: Transactions of the Society for Modeling and Simulation International.

1992 - 1994

In 1992, I started as a Ph.D. student at Vanderbilt University under the direction of John Bourne where I worked in the area of intelligent tutoring systems and reactive learning environments. I was the main creator of the Electronics Laboratory of the Future that was nominated for The Computerworld Smithsonian Award by Microsoft Corporation in 1994. The software was distributed by Falcon Software under the name Electronics Laboratory Simulator (ELS) till about 2005.

Il était une fois ...

Pieter J. Mosterman Originally, I am from the Netherlands, where in 1991 I graduated with a Master's degree from the University of Twente under the direction of Klaas Wijbrans, Jan F. Broenink, and Job van Amerongen on the topic of structured analysis methods for the specification of control system implementations. I finally got to meet one of my then inspirers, Stephen Mellor, at a workshop on "Designing for Embedded Parallel Computing Platforms: Architectures, Design Tools, and Applications" that I helped organize in 2009 ...


This page is a fairly substantial modification of my previous homepage.

This page was last updated on April 23, 2011 by Pieter J. Mosterman.