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Systems Architecture Research Group

As part of the Laboratory for Digitalisation, the Systems Architecture Research Group does research on modern, free and open architectures for industrial embedded systems with a strong focus on safety- and mixed-critical systems.

In parallel, the Software Engineering Group of Digitalisation Laboratory develops quantitative techniques that support safety certification efforts for OSS components when being used in safety-critical environments.

The Systems Architecture Research Group has profound experience with the following processor architectures:

  • ARM (32/64 Bit)
  • PowerPC
  • RISC-V
  • x86 (Intel, AMD)

Embedded Virtualisation

Embedded virtualisation substantially differs from common enterprise, desktop or mainframe virtualisation, where the technology has its roots. Many of these traditional users of virtualisation consider the consolidation of services as major motivation.

While hypervisors are often optimised for high throughput and optimal performance in the desktop and enterprise segment, virtualisation solutions for real-time constrained embedded systems significantly differ: the architecture needs to target low latencies, deterministic computation cycles and maintaining real-time capabilities.

Static hardware partitioning is a special case of embedded virtualisation that exclusively assigns hardware resources to isolated computing domains that execute on the same logical platform. It makes the assumption that available resources are greater or equal than the required computational power: there is no need for sharing any resource of the system. This is already the case in numerous industrial appliances, as multi-core CPUs conquered embedded markets.

Static hardware partitioning means that the assignment of physical resources to computing domains is static, that is, the assignment does not dynamically change over time. Partitioning implies strong isolation across partitions or domains. Virtualisation extensions of modern CPUs can be exploited to create such static and distinct execution environments. However, static hardware partitioning does not yet give guarantees on implementing a real-time capable system architecture. If it is possible to implement static hardware partitioning upon virtualisation extensions of modern architectures with no (software-induced) hypervisor resp. virtual machine monitor (VMM) overhead during system operation, then the underlying real-time guarantees of the execution platform (that must exist in any case) are inherited by execution domains (i.e., the guests) by design and without any further software interaction. This architectural approach is implemented by the Open-Source Linux-based partitioning hypervisor Jailhouse. Group members of the Systems Architecture Research Group actively support the development of Jailhouse.



Open Theses

Looking for Hardware Hackers: RISC-V on FPGAs
Type: Master thesis
State: open
Supervisor: Stefan Huber
Student: No Name

Research Assistants

Doctoral Students

Research Master Students

Master Students


Central Publications


OSSJ Conference
Semi-Formal Verification of Embedded Linux Systems Using Trace-Based Models
Benno Bielmeier, Wolfgang MauererOpen Source Summig Japan (OSSJ)2022.
PDF [BibTex]
Design Space Exploration and Implementation of Efficient Memory Snapshots
Mario Mintel2022.
PDF [BibTex]
Kernel-Assisted Copy-on-Write Snapshots for Main-Memory HTAP Databses
Lucas Wolf2022.
PDF [BibTex]
Socio-Technical Distillation – From Micro-Level Responsibilities to Macro-Level Architecture Views
Pia Eichinger2022.
PDF [BibTex]
QPU-System Co-Design for Quantum HPC Accelerators
Karen Wintersperger, Hila Safi, Wolfgang MauererProceedings of the 35th GI/ITG International Conference on the Architecture of Computing SystemsGesellschaft für Informatik2022.
PDF https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-031-21867-5_7 [BibTex]
Static Hardware Partitioning on RISC-V - Shortcomings, Limitations, and Prospects
Ralf Ramsauer, Stefan Huber, Konrad Schwarz, Jan Kiszka, Wolfgang Mauerer2022.
PDF https://doi.org/10.48550/arXiv.2208.02703 [BibTex]
Applicability of Quantum Computing on Database Query Optimization
Manuel Schönberger, Stefanie Scherzinger, Wolfgang MauererFrühjahrstreffen Fachgruppe Datenbanken in Potsdam (Poster Presentation)2022.
PDF [BibTex]
Fork à la carte für In-Memory-Datenbanken
Mario Mintel, Ralf Ramsauer, Daniel Lohmann, Stefanie Scherzinger, Wolfgang MauererFrühjahrstreffen Fachgruppe Betriebssysteme in Hannover2022.
PDF [BibTex]


Silentium! Run-Analyse-Eradicate the Noise out of the DB/OS Stack
Wolfgang Mauerer, Ralf Ramsauer, Edson Lucas, Daniel Lohmann, Stefanie ScherzingerBTW 2021Gesellschaft für Informatik, Bonn2021.
PDF 10.18420/btw2021-21 [BibTex]
OSS Architecture for Mixed-Criticality Systems: A Dual View from a Software and System Engineering Perspective
Ralf Ramsauer PHD thesisLeibniz Universität HannoverHannover: Institutionelles Repositorium der Leibniz Universität Hannover2021.
PDF 10.15488/11722 [BibTex]
Under Review
Principles and Practice of Hypervisor-Assisted Real-World Hardware Partitioning
Ralf Ramsauer, Jan Kiszka, Daniel Lohmann, Wolfgang Mauerer2021.


Spectre and Meltdown vs. Real-Time: How Much do Mitigations Cost?
Ralf Ramsauer, Jan Kiszka, Wolfgang MauererEmbedded Linux Conference Europe2018.
Implementierung gemischt kritischer Systeme durch statische Hardwarepartitionierung
Ralf Ramsauer, Jan Kiszka, Wolfgang MauererFrühjahrstreffen Fachgruppe Betriebssysteme in Hannover2018.
Meltdown & Spectre — Werden wir alle sterben? Technischer Überblick und Analyse neuester Erkentnisse über ungewolltes Prozessorverhalten
Ralf Ramsauer, Joachim Weber, Wolfgang Mauerer2018.


OSPERT Workshop B
Look Mum, no VM Exits! (Almost)
Ralf Ramsauer, Jan Kiszka, Daniel Lohmann, Wolfgang MauererProceedings of the 13th Annual Workshop on Operating Systems Platforms for Embedded Real-Time Applications (OSPERT '17)2017.
PDF Slides [BibTex]


GPU-Assisted hard real-time processing: Problems and Potentials
Wolfgang MauererProc. Embedded World Conference2016.


Real-Time Android: Achieving determinism and ease of use
Wolfgang Mauerer, J. Sawallisch, G. Hillier, S. Oberthür, S. HönickEmbedded Wold Conference2014.
PDF [BibTex]
Supershrink Linux – and beyond
Wolfgang MauererProc. Embedded World Conference2014.


Linux durchleuchtet
Gernot Hillier, Wolfgang Mauererc’t Magazin für Computertechnik, Heise Verlag2013.
Linux Platform Debugging: It’s not just for Kernel Hackers
Wolfgang MauererProc. Embedded World Conference2013.
Performance-Analyse mit Perf
G. Hiller, Wolfgang Mauererc’t Sonderheft Linux, Heise Verlag2013.


Sicherheit von Android-Systemen
S. Oberthür, Wolfgang MauererGI-Edition Lecture Notes in Informatics2012.


Am offenen Kern
Wolfgang Mauerer, Gernot Hillierc’t Magazin für Computertechnik, Heise Verlag2011.


Rundreise durch den Linux-Kernel
Wolfgang Mauerer, Gernot Hillierc’t kompakt Linux, Heise Verlag2010.


Chasing the Penguin: State and Evolution of the Kernel
Wolfgang MauererProceedings Linux-Kongress 2008(UpTimes 02/2008), GUUG/Lehmanns2008.
Professional Linux Kernel Architecture
Wolfgang MauererJohn Wiley & Sons20089780470343432.


Linux-Kernelarchitektur Konzepte, Strukturen und Algorithmen von Kernel 2.6
Wolfgang MauererHanser20039783446225664.


Einführung in den Linux-Kernel
Wolfgang MauererLinux Magazin, Linux New Media AG1998.


Textverarbeitung mit LATEX 2e [2 epsilon] unter UNIX
Wolfgang MauererHanser19979783446189096.