Functional safety for automobiles

As automobile electronics systems have increased in complexity, the challenges for suppliers and OEMs have multiplied. There is a necessity to ensure systems can be tested and that they can support the level of reliability that’s needed in a car, without failure.

Electronic safety systems are becoming commonplace in automobiles with the arrival of Advanced Driver-Assisted Systems (ADAS) and ‘self-driving car’ safety systems. The general public is well aware of the safety implications of handing vehicle control to sensors and software. In response to these modern challenges, the automotive industry elected to introduce its own functional safety standard.

The ISO 26262 automotive safety standard

ISO 26262 was created to define functional safety guidelines for automotive systems installed in series production passenger cars. It has been adapted from the IEC 61508 functional safety standard for electrical, electronic and programmable safety-related systems.

The major goal of the ISO 26262 automotive certification is to identify potential hazards caused by malfunctioning behavior of electrical and electronic safety-related systems, including how this technology interacts with other components of the car. Automotive risks are then classified from most to least rigorous using automotive safety integrity levels (ASIL) from A to D.

The entire production process of the passenger vehicle differs somewhat from other electrical and electronic systems and is defined in ISO 26262 using an automobile safety lifecycle. The lifecycle highlights the need for a safety manager, the requirement for developing a safety plan, and the definition of confirmation measures including safety review, audit, and assessment.

The Richland Technologies edge

Richland Technologies employs engineers who have worked extensively with the automotive safety lifecycle and our team can tailor it to suit our customer’s needs throughout the management, development, production, operation, service, and decommissioning phases. We work hands on with our customers throughout the requirements specification, design, implementation, integration, verification, validation and configuration stages to provide full compliance management.

Our processes are automated using a project proven tool suite that helps our engineers eliminate or reduce labor-intensive and error-prone elements of the development process. The result is more efficiently managed consulting services that enable us to get our customers’ products to market quicker than ever before and in a more cost-effective manner.