Robustness of temporal logic specifications for continuous-time signals

Georgios E. Fainekos, George J. Pappas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

361 Scopus citations


In this paper, we consider the robust interpretation of Metric Temporal Logic (MTL) formulas over signals that take values in metric spaces. For such signals, which are generated by systems whose states are equipped with non-trivial metrics, for example continuous or hybrid, robustness is not only natural, but also a critical measure of system performance. Thus, we propose multi-valued semantics for MTL formulas, which capture not only the usual Boolean satisfiability of the formula, but also topological information regarding the distance, ε, from unsatisfiability. We prove that any other signal that remains ε-close to the initial one also satisfies the same MTL specification under the usual Boolean semantics. Finally, our framework is applied to the problem of testing formulas of two fragments of MTL, namely Metric Interval Temporal Logic (MITL) and closed Metric Temporal Logic (clMTL), over continuous-time signals using only discrete-time analysis. The motivating idea behind our approach is that if the continuous-time signal fulfills certain conditions and the discrete-time signal robustly satisfies the temporal logic specification, then the corresponding continuous-time signal should also satisfy the same temporal logic specification.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4262-4291
Number of pages30
JournalTheoretical Computer Science
Issue number42
StatePublished - Sep 28 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Linear and metric temporal logic
  • Metric spaces
  • Robustness
  • Testing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • Computer Science(all)


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