ISO 26262, the functional safety standard for passenger cars, was put into effect in November 2011. Since this standard is for the development of passenger cars and is deeply related to the lives and safety of the ordinary people, many companies and development organizations will take various steps to comply with it from now on.
With that said, conforming to this standard does not mean throwing away yesterday’s development technologies, nor does it drastically improve the safety of new model cars. In fact, with most of the development themes, just keeping to do today’s work with existing methods should be enough although this is so only when conventional products are developed – it does not necessarily apply to the realization of new-type safety concepts that will come into the world in the future. The themes and the development departments which were not held accountable for any product liability in the past will also be required to properly demonstrate the consideration of the safety specified in the standard from now on.
TOYO Corporation is neither an automotive manufacturer, nor a supplier, nor an ECU program developer on commission. Our primary business is measuring things. We provide solutions for measuring the sound, vibration, kinematics, and drivability of passenger cars, trucks, busses, motorcycles and so forth. The solutions we provide also include tools for the electronic measurement of car control networks and those for the MISRA-C compliance measurement of ECU programs.
We have a history of providing instruments and systems necessary for these measurements to the Japanese automotive industry by importing them from abroad or by developing them by ourselves. Especially, when we are required to provide measurement systems of the accuracy high enough to satisfy the stringent quality standards in Japan, we tailor them by having repeated, thorough discussions with engineers of automotive manufacturers on their requirements over months.
From these experiences, we fully understand that automobiles can be mass-produced only through an uncountable number of safety designs, measurements, and verification, and for this reason, we can assert that automobiles basically are what have been developed with functional safety. However, human creations can never be perfect. When a safety system fails, to what extent can the driver avoid accidents with his own driving techniques? Measuring this control capability means to have guidelines for the controllability evaluation specified in Part 3 Hazard Analysis of ISO-26262.
To be continued
Takao Futagami specializes in risk analysis at TOYO Corporation, Polarion Software's country partner for Japan