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Automating Test Generation of Industrial Control Software through a PLC-to-Python Translation Framework and Pynguin


Publication Type:

Conference/Workshop Paper


30th Asia-Pacific Software Engineering Conference




Numerous industrial sectors employ Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC) software to control safety-critical systems. These systems necessitate extensive testing and stringent coverage measurements, which can be facilitated by automated test-generation techniques. Existing such techniques have not been applied to PLC programs, and therefore do not directly support the latter regarding automated test-case generation. To address this deficit, in this work, we introduce PyLC, a tool designed to automate the conversion of PLC programs to Python code, assisted by an existing test generator called Pynguin. Our framework is capable of handling PLC programs written in the Function Block Diagram language. To demonstrate its capabilities, we employ PyLC to transform safety-critical programs from industry and illustrate how our approach can facilitate the manual and automatic creation of tests. Our study highlights the efficacy of leveraging Python as an intermediary language to bridge the gap between PLC development tools, Python-based unit testing, and automated test generation.


@inproceedings{Ebrahimi Salari6847,
author = {Mikael Ebrahimi Salari and Eduard Paul Enoiu and Cristina Seceleanu and Wasif Afzal},
title = {Automating Test Generation of Industrial Control Software through a PLC-to-Python Translation Framework and Pynguin},
month = {February},
year = {2024},
booktitle = {30th Asia-Pacific Software Engineering Conference},
publisher = {IEEE},
url = {}