Headed by Assoc. Prof. Todor Stefanov since 2008, LERC is an expert group and an internationally recognized leader in advanced research on Embedded (Real-time) Systems and Software. Such systems/software are application domain specific information processing systems that are tightly coupled to the physical environment, thus they are also called "Cyber-Physical Systems". These systems can be found in home appliances, bio-/medical and IoT devices, consumer electronic and automotive/avionic products, wireless and portable multimedia terminals, distributed sensor networks, robots, and many more.
More specifically, the LERC group has been investigating fundamental methods and mathematically-/model-based techniques for the specification, development, programming, and verification of Embedded Systems-on-Chip (SoC). An Embedded SoC is an information/data processing system that is embedded into larger systems such as MRI scanners, EEG/ECG monitors, implantable and wearable medical devices, mobile devices, control systems of vehicles etc. Also, Embedded SoCs are used for very fast, cheap, and reliable processing and analysis of large volumes of data as well as in embedded machine/deep learning at the Edge of the IoT paradigm. The LERC group covers two related topics in this rapidly evolving Embedded SoC domain:
- Embedded Systems theory and applications;
- Embedded Systems Design -- methods, techniques, Computer-Aided Design (CAD) tools, tool-flows and design frameworks.
The research at LERC deals with application models, platform/architecture models, and mapping models, at various levels of abstraction, for performance analysis, exploration and design, conceptually and practically, down to real platform/system implementations. The main mission of LERC is by its research to contribute in a highly innovative way to the system-level design of embedded and cyber-physical systems and software -- conceptually (theory), methodologically (design methods and tools), and structurally (platforms/architectures).
Finally, LERC is advocating and applying state-of-the-art techniques both in the way the group's projects are integrated, documented, and assessed, and in the way CAD software tools are written, tested and assessed. All this justifies the LERC belief that "The CAD software is the Publication" that makes significant impact in the research and industrial community. In this respect, one of the LERC achievements is the DAEDALUS open source software framework for automated design, programming, and implementation of Multi-processor Embedded SoCs, targeting streaming applications.