Problem Oriented Engineering for Software Safety

Mannering, Derek Paul (2010). Problem Oriented Engineering for Software Safety. PhD thesis The Open University.



Safety critical systems must satisfy stringent safety standards and there development requires the use of specialist safe software system development (SSSD) approaches as the complexity and penetration of these systems increases. These SSSD approaches satisfy certain useful properties that make them suitable for safety system development. The first objective of this thesis is to select a candidate SSSD approach and evaluate its capabilities against a set of useful properties identified from reviewing a group of existing SSSD approaches, and thus show that this candidate SSSD approach is appropriate for use in safety system development.

In addition, a second objective is to use this candidate SSSD approach to improve the early life cycle phase of an existing industrial safety development process used to develop embedded avionics applications. In particular to allow issues to be resolved earlier in the development, which are currently not being uncovered until much later in the development when they are much more difficult and expensive to correct. This involved the identification of further properties and issues that the candidate SSSD approach must address.

The overall aim is to demonstrate that this candidate SSSD approach can be used in the early phase of a safety system development to derive a validated specification that can be subjected to safety analysis to show that it satisfies the identified system safety properties and thus forms a viable basis for the rest of the development.

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