Case Study of Failure Analysis Techniques for Safety Critical Systems

Part of the Advances in Intelligent and Soft Computing book series (AINSC, volume 166)


Safety critical systems are built upon complex software and are difficult to maintain. These systems must effectively deal with the defects identified by analyzing its failure in order to make the system free from hazards. Any chance of human injury or death can be avoided by thoroughly verifying the safety of critical software embedded in any safety system. In this paper, the analysis on different failure analysis techniques such as Failure Modes, Effects Analysis (FMEA), Failure Modes, Effects and Criticality Analysis (FMECA) and Fault Tree Analysis (FTA) are carried out considering dependability as its critical parameter. The risk involved in safety critical system is analyzed with the case study of remote monitoring of a patient with pacemaker. The main observations are: i) Failure mode classification of the software at every stage, ii) Safety critical parameter evaluation, iii) Indication of defensive measures against the severity of hazards, iv) Correlation of FMEA, FMECA and FTA with the computed critical data and v) Recommendation of an appropriate failure analysis method for pacemaker operation to ensure safety.

Index Terms

cardiac arrhymias dependability FMEA FMECA FTA pacemaker remote monitoring and safety critical systems 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.M.S. Ramaiah Institute of TechnologyBangaloreIndia

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