Functional Safety for the Industrial Market


May 9, 2022

Preparing industrial products for safe use in hazardous applications or potentially hazardous environments is a high priority for manufacturers. For components, devices, and systems that could be used in safety-related systems, meeting functional safety requirements minimizes the possibility of a systematic or design-based issue by examining the potential failures and reducing the probability of those failures.

If you’re designing and manufacturing products or machinery for industrial processes or manufacturing applications, CSA Group has a wide range of functional safety evaluation services, including testing and certification for products meant to be used in hazardous locations. CSA can help you certify even the most complex industrial equipment and control systems governed by uniform sets of international functional safety requirements. They can also help you determine the correct Safety Integrity Level (SIL) and Performance Level (PL) designations to help reduce the risks associated with industrial machinery, equipment, and processes. CSA Group is a fully accredited third-party testing and certification provider, providing functional safety evaluation and certification services since the release of the first edition of IEC 61508 in 2001.

The importance of functional safety

The evaluation of systems and components to assess compliance with applicable functional safety standards requirements provides designers, owners, operators, and other stakeholders with increased confidence that:

  • • Processes and equipment operate as expected
  • • Products meet expected industry requirements
  • • Risk has been considered in the design

Equipment suppliers may also leverage functional safety certifications to gain market advantage, access new markets, and attract customers who require products that meet a given safety integrity level (SIL) for use in their safety-related applications or systems.

CSA assesses and certifies a wide range of companies and products involved in many diverse applications supplying many sectors, including the process, machinery, and automotive sectors.

The basic safety publication, which is widely accepted, IEC 61508, provides a firm basis for the specification, design, and operation of electrical or electronic (including software controlled) safety systems. It also forms the basis for related industry-sector standards, such as:

  • • IEC 61511 – Functional safety – Safety instrumented systems for the process industry sector.
  • • IEC 62061 – Safety of machinery – Functional safety of safety-related control systems.
  • • EN 50271 – Electrical apparatus for the detection and measurement of combustible gases, toxic gases, or oxygen – Requirements and tests for apparatus using software and/or digital technologies.
  • • EN 50402 – Electrical apparatus for the detection and measurement of combustible or toxic gases or vapours of oxygen – Requirements for the functional safety of gas detection systems.

One-stop-shop for your evaluation needs

Preliminary Design Review and Gap Analysis

CSA’s assessors work with you to complete a preliminary review early in the development process to detect significant gaps and identify deficiencies that impact meeting the requirements of the applicable standard.

Failure Mode Effect and Analysis (FMEA) Assessment and SIL Determination

To determine the appropriate SIL, CSA’s assessors identify and evaluate the effects of component failure modes, verifying the failure rate information and performing a hardware analysis.

Assessment of Supporting Functional Safety Management

This assessment helps you understand the requirements for:

  • • Hardware and software lifecycle processes
  • • Organizational rules and procedures to maintain functional safety
  • • Production, operational, service, and decommissioning management

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