Formal Verification of a Map Merging Protocol in the Multi-Agent Programming Contest

Matt Luckcuck, Rafael C. Cardoso

Communication is a critical part of enabling multi-agent systems to cooperate. This means that applying formal methods to protocols governing communication within multi-agent systems provides useful confidence in its reliability. In this paper, we describe the formal verification of a complex communication protocol that coordinates agents merging maps of their environment. The protocol was used by the LFC team in the 2019 edition of the Multi-Agent Programming Contest (MAPC). Our specification of the protocol is written in Communicating Sequential Processes (CSP), which is well-suited approach to specifying agent communication protocols due to its focus on concurrent communicating systems. We validate the specification's behaviour using five scenarios where the correct behaviour is known, and verify that eventually all the maps have merged.

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