NFM 2019: 11th Annual NASA Formal Methods Symposium

Challenges for Future Exploration

May 7-9, 2019

McMurtry Auditorium, Rice University, Houston, TX

The widespread use and increasing complexity of mission-critical and safety-critical systems at NASA and in the aerospace industry require advanced techniques that address these systems' specification, design, verification, validation, and certification requirements. The NASA Formal Methods Symposium (NFM) is a forum to foster collaboration between theoreticians and practitioners from NASA, academia, and industry. NFM's goals are to identify challenges and to provide solutions for achieving assurance for such critical systems.

New developments and emerging applications like autonomous software for uncrewed deep space human habitats, caretaker robotics, Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS), UAS Traffic Management (UTM), and the need for system-wide fault detection, diagnosis, and prognostics provide new challenges for system specification, development, and verification approaches. The focus of these symposiums are on formal techniques and other approaches for software assurance, including their theory, current capabilities and limitations, as well as their potential application to aerospace, robotics, and other NASA-relevant safety-critical systems during all stages of the software life-cycle.

The NASA Formal Methods Symposium is an annual event organized by the NASA Formal Methods (NFM) Steering Committee, comprised of researchers spanning several NASA centers. NFM 2019 is being co-organized by Rice University and NASA- Johnson Space Center in Houston, TX.

The meeting will be comprised of invited talks by leading researchers and practitioners, a panel discussion on the challenges of future exploration that formal methods could address , and more specialized talks based on contributed papers.

Topics of Interest

We encourage submissions on cross-cutting approaches that bring together formal methods and techniques from other domains such as probabilistic reasoning, machine learning, control theory, robotics, and quantum computing among others.

  • Formal verification, including theorem proving, model checking, and static analysis
  • Advances in automated theorem proving including SAT and SMT solving
  • Use of formal methods in software and system testing
  • Run-time verification
  • Techniques and algorithms for scaling formal methods, such as abstraction and symbolic methods, compositional techniques, as well as parallel and/or distributed techniques
  • Code generation from formally verified models
  • Safety cases and system safety
  • Formal approaches to fault tolerance
  • Theoretical advances and empirical evaluations of formal methods techniques for safety-critical systems, including hybrid and embedded systems
  • Formal methods in systems engineering and model-based development
  • Correct-by-design controller synthesis
  • Formal assurance methods to handle adaptive systems

Important Dates - UPDATED

Abstract Submission: 10 Dec 2018

Paper Submission: 17 Dec 2018

Paper Notifications: 22 Feb 2019

Camera-ready Papers: 22 Mar 2019

Symposium: 7-9 May 2019

Location & Cost

The symposium will take place in the McMurtry Auditorium, Rice University, Houston, Texas, USA, May 7--9, 2019.

There will be no registration fee for participants. All interested individuals, including non-US citizens, are welcome to attend, to listen to the talks, and to participate in discussions; however, all attendees must register.

Submission Details

There are two categories of submissions:

  1. Regular papers describing fully developed work and complete results (15 pages + references)
  2. Two categories of short papers: (6 pages + references)
    1. Tool Papers describing novel, publicly-available tools
    2. Case Studies detailing complete applications of formal methods to real systems with publicly-available artifacts

All papers should be in English and describe original work that has not been published or submitted elsewhere. All submissions will be fully reviewed by members of the Programme Committee. Papers will appear in a volume of Springer's Lecture Notes on Computer Science (LNCS), and must use LNCS style formatting. Papers should be submitted in PDF format here:

Keynote Speakers

  • Virginie Wiels, ONERA, France
  • Richard Murray, California Institute of Technology, USA
  • NASA Panel: Challenges for Future Exploration
    • Joe Caram, NASA/JSC- Chief, Exploration Mission Planning Office
    • Kimberly Hambuchen, NASA/HQ- Principal Technologist for Robotics
    • Emily Nelson, NASA/JSC- Deputy Chief, Flight Director Branch
    • Bill Othon, NASA/JSC- Gateway Verification and Validation Lead

Program Committee



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