Algorithms, Optimisation, Visualisation

Research targets of Task Group S4

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Research Mission

We study flexible data exchange infrastructures for all aspects of optical simulations in PhoenixD. Specialists in various groups initially simulate isolated aspects of optical technologies. To close the gaps between those aspects, we need a specific yet flexible, exchange mechanism. New partners and demands should be easy to integrate. Our goal is to conceive a tailored data exchange mechanism for mid-and long-term integration within and beyond PhoenixD.

Our Motivation

In PhoenixD, new optical technologies are investigated and prepared for practical use. The spectrum ranges from basic research to production; some of the effects studied are microscopic, others macroscopic in size. In optically controlled applications in agriculture, the speed of light meets the speed of a tractor driving across a field and irradiating the plants individually. How can all these phenomena and effects be combined in a joint simulation model?

The experts in PhoenixD first cover partial aspects in depth. An example: How do plants change under the influence of different irradiation? How can this irradiation be delivered precisely and for the right period of time? But also: How do different light beams interfere?

In future, the exchange mechanism should become flexible enough to integrate new partners or external parties into the simulation network with little effort.

Researchers from various disciplines work in the Task Group S4, which connects PhoenixD. Mathematicians are investigating the potential of particular differential equation approaches with the partners in PhoenixD. Software engineers are developing a technical concept for a data exchange infrastructure between the optics and mechanical engineering working groups that create simulations.

In this way, work results will be exchanged in the future and made available to other groups for joint simulation. In the long term, the exchange mechanism shall become so flexible that new partners or external parties can join the simulation network with little effort.

Our Research

PhoenixD researches optics. It creates large amounts of simulation data in each participating research group. Connecting and integrating results and approaches is challenging, both on a conceptual and data exchange levels.

In such a complex and interdisciplinary setup, data exchange may seem to be a purely technical challenge. However, many large projects and initiatives indicate that a good mutual understanding of all partners and their requirements is crucial for smooth and effective collaboration. At the same time, eliciting and validating those requirements is far more complicated than initially expected. In the software industry, requirements engineering is a prerequisite to success in large and interdisciplinary projects. In a research environment such as PhoenixD, the application of requirements engineering is far less customary.

The Software Engineering Group at Leibniz Universität Hannover supports PhoenixD in discovering and consolidating participants' requirements and will conceive a concept for an intelligent simulation data bus on this basis. Earlier concepts like CORBA (Common Object Request Broker Architecture) in the software engineering domains were attempts to connect object-oriented systems.

There will likely be changes in the requirements, reference models, and interfaces. It will be challenging to accommodate access to various stakeholders while allowing smooth access to established partners. Therefore, generating access adaptors will be indirectly specified using domain-specific languages (DSL). This shifts specifications to a higher-level description that is easier to modify for participants.

The Intelligent Simulation Data Bus (Figure 1) is the internal backbone of PhoenixD to connect simulations of different aspects, scales, and time granularities. We also envision it to become the Gateway to the World, allowing external partners to contribute and benefit.

© Kurt Schneider
Figure 1: Evolving a reference model for a flexible intelligent data bus middleware concept. Access direct (e.g., Area S) or via generated interfaces, specified in Domain-specific languages (DSL)

Prof. Kurt Schneider advises various industry collaborations and leading conferences worldwide on requirements engineering topics.

  • Steering Committee Chair of the International Conference on Requirements Engineering Foundation for Software Quality REFSQ,
  • Host of the 2020 Special Interest Group on Requirements Engineering of the German Computer Society – Gesellschaft für Informatik, and
  • Member of different Industry Cooperations on Requirements topics with major companies, e.g., Volkswagen Nutzfahrzeuge, BakerHuges, Daimler.

Selected Publications:

  • Chazette, L. (2019). Mitigating Challenges in the Elicitation and Analysis of Transparency Requirements. in 2019 IEEE 27th International Requirements Engineering Conference (RE). DOI:


Empfohlene weiterführende Literatur zur Entwicklung von Domänenen-spezifischen Sprachen (DSL) für die Code-Generierung


© Kurt Schneider
Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Kurt Schneider
Team Leader
© Kurt Schneider
Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Kurt Schneider
Team Leader