Why is Functional Safety relevant for Automotive industry?

Document created by Toño Hernández on Sep 26, 2017
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Car makers are addressing safety concerns through the demanding industrial environment, building new capabilities to enhance the overall performance of products and systems to guarantee security. Is because of this that Functional Safety is experiencing broad changes in both technology and business: while encroaching into areas of technology, like semiconductors (which is a huge radical shift from the traditional automotive industry, built on mechanical and hydraulic engineering), the automotive business is becoming more consumer-focused driven (as more electronic driver-assisted features are being incorporated into vehicles). 

 

Most of the 2 billion cars forecasted for 2040 will include onboard components (sensors, actuators, microcontrollers, microprocessors, transceivers...) as part of complex Electric and Electronic (E/E) Systems working to comply even more severe safety and security standards. The automotive industry is fast-moving to develop intelligent transportation E/E systems, where Functional Safety will behave more actively rather than passively. 

 

Modern vehicles have more E/E systems than before —implies more components on each: cars from a decade ago had around $300 USD worth of semiconductors in them, present-day cars can reach $2,000 USD worth, and the automotive industry is heading toward $4,000 USD per car. When having more components to keep the security and safety, the liability level of each individual component is expected to be significantly improved as a complete system. 

automotive electronics cost 1950-2030

 

Functional Safety is relevant for the Automotive industry because it considers a "Safety Lifecycle" to build those complete systems under the standardized performance levels. Safety Lifecycle observes from initial concept and design, through development, construction and installation, to maintenance and modifications. Engineers are following safety and security standards while managing hazards and risks by rethinking the complete system using the Safety Lifecycle: from improving methodologies to rearchitecting tools and the software. 

 

Functional Safety is prompting a new automotive industry understanding by driving significant changes in technologies (software and tools), hazard and risk analysis, methodologies and business practices. 

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