Vehicles sophistication and complexity is on the rise; modern vehicles comprise tens of Electronic Control Units (ECUs). This trend is expected to continue as autonomous driving systems will be integrated.
As vehicle complexity increases, risk analysis becomes more difficult. Functional safety analysis (as defined in ISO 26262) provides a path for identifying the possible hardware and software failures, and analyzing the reliability of related safety systems.
Insufficient safety of automotive systems may lead to dangerous events, very expensive fleet recalls, and loss of reputation.
Safety is achieved by two main methods:
- Eliminating failure modes with high risk effects. This usually requires equipment redesign
- Reducing probability of failure mode occurrence and/or severity of the failure mode effect. This can be achieved by adding fault tolerance and redundant units
Reliability and Maintenance
The automotive industry is highly competitive, and maintainability is an important issue to customers. Nobody wants frequent visits to the garage, and long repair times.
Therefore, automotive reliability and maintainability are important.
Safety, reliability and maintainability analyses should be an integral part of automotive products design process.