Functional Safety

Functional Safety is concerned with products or systems whose failure to operate reliably could harm people or the environment.

IEC 61508 is the accepted international standard that deals with the functional safety of electrical or electronic (including software-based) safety-related systems. The reliability of such systems is determined by the Safety Integrity Level (SIL) of the safety function they perform.

Increasingly, certification to IEC 61508, 61511 and other related standards is being encouraged by regulatory authorities and sought by end-users as a way of minimising risk and demonstrating best practice.

In contracts involving safety-related systems, IEC 61508 is often a prerequisite, marking the leaders out from the competition.

CSA Group (under Sira Certification Service) is accredited by UKAS to undertake its certification activities in accordance with the CASS Scheme, and is committed to helping its customers promote their products and services in the international market, with the highest level of credibility with regard to functional safety.

We assess a wide range of companies and products involved in many diverse applications supplying for example, the process, machinery, railway and nuclear industries. The relevant standards which are now widely accepted are:

IEC 61508– the generic standard. It provides a firm basis for the specification, design and operation of electrical or electronic (including software controlled) safety systems and allows the potential of this technology to be realised fully and safely. It also forms the basis for related industry-sector standards, such as:

IEC 61511 – Functional Safety of safety instrumented systems for the process industry.

IEC 61513 – Nuclear power plants: Instrumentation and control for systems important to safety.

IEC 62061 – Safety of Machinery: Functional safety of safety-related E/E/PE control systems.

EN 50402 – Detection and measurement of combustible or toxic gases, vapours or oxygen.