Achieving Functional Safety through a Certified Flow

By Daniel Payne

Functional safety (FuSa) is a big deal, especially when driving a car. My beloved 1998 Acura RL recently exhibited a strange behavior at 239K miles, after making a turn the steering wheel would stay tilted in the direction of the last turn instead of straightening out. The auto mechanic pinpointed the failure to the ball joints, so I ended up selling the vehicle to someone who was willing to make the repairs. Today our cars are filled with complex electronics, semiconductor IP, firmware, software, sensors, actuators and a variety of propulsion systems: internal combustion engines, hybrids, and electric motors. How should we meet functional safety requirements for industries like automotive, medical and life-critical domains?

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