exida explains Blog

Entries tagged with: PFDavg

Are You Ready For What’s Coming?

Are You Ready For What’s Coming?

If you’re like me then you’ve been waiting for the new draft of IEC 61511 to be officially issued since its release has been delayed for some time.  However, a draft has been released and can help in preparing end users for what’s to come.  The question…

Read More...

  • by Dr. William Goble, CFSE
  • Thursday, May 12, 2011
  • Certification

Buy Certified Equipment, Meet the Standard, Right? WRONG!

Certified to SIL 4 - Cycle Test Failure Data is Dangerous

I got a copy of the IEC 61508 certificate for a solenoid valve today from an engineer who thought something was wrong.  Although the certificate was from a well known certification company, the certificate gave a “Dangerous Failure Rate” of 1.7 FITS (1.7 * 10-9 failures per…

Read More...

Do you believe the numbers?

In a couple of recent projects and discussions, I have come across something extremely concerning. Engineers are very good at performing accurate calculations, and the PFDavg and PFH computations for SIL performance verification are improving in precision all the time. Unfortunately, there is often such a focus…

Read More...

Getting Good Proof Test Coverage Numbers

Getting Good Proof Test Coverage Numbers

Several years ago we recognized that proof test coverage was an important variable that must be considered when doing PFDavg calculations. We ran some models and discovered that the difference between “perfect” proof test coverage (100%) and a very good 90% could mean a whole SIL

Read More...

How can I improve my SIL?

How can I improve my SIL?

Click here to read the first entry in this blog series (What is SIL compliance?)

Click here to read the second entry in this blog series (How is SIL Used?)

As we now know, a Safety Integrity Level (SIL) can only be given to a…

Read More...

How to Calculate Proof Test Coverage
  • by Dr. William Goble, CFSE
  • Thursday, October 16, 2014
  • Certification

How to Calculate Proof Test Coverage

Most engineers who design and verify safety instrumented functions (SIFs) understand how hard it is to design a manual proof test with high effectiveness (also called high proof test coverage). Those folks who understand that a proof test is not likely to detect all failures never use simplified equations…

Read More...

How to Decode an exida IEC 61508 Certificate: Part 2

Click here to read Part 1

Now that you know the step-by-step process of product certification, now let’s take a look at the actual information on the certificate. 

In the left panel (gray background) you will find an exida certification logo. …

Read More...

My Proof Test Coverage is Better Than Yours!

NEVER Use B10 Values for PFDavg Calculations

The machine safety community has defined a number called the “B10 number.”  It is a measure of time where 10% of a population of devices should have failed.  Generally it is a measure of expected end of life or “useful life” as defined by the reliability engineering community.

The…

Read More...

OREDA Data vs. FMEDA Data

Site Safety Index IMPACT on Failure Rates and PFDavg

Site Safety Index IMPACT on Failure Rates and PFDavg

Performing site audits for numerous customers can be very telling.  All sites have their own unique layout, procedures, documentation, and people.  Did you know that failure rates differ from site to site?  Are you surprised?  According to our recent webinar results, the majority of people aren’t, and in fact…

Read More...

Site Safety Index™ (SSI) – A Simple Model for Site Variations in Safety
  • by Dr. William Goble, CFSE
  • Monday, April 11, 2016
  • Certification

Site Safety Index™ (SSI) – A Simple Model for Site Variations in Safety

In several of our technical papers over the years, we have noticed that failure rates for the manufacturer, model number are different at different sites, even when the processes were quite similar.  When I have mentioned this to end users and manufacturers, often the response is “Yes, I have…

Read More...

Super-Duper Logic Solver Data; So what?

The Architectural Constraint Blind Side
  • by Denise Chastain Knight, P.E., CFSE
  • Thursday, August 27, 2015
  • Certification

The Architectural Constraint Blind Side

I did my homework, purchased certified devices, and specified physical redundancy. I expected an uneventful SIL Verification but the assessor is telling me that I have functions failing Architectural Constraints in the sensor and final element groups. How can that be? 

Low demand mode Safety Instrumented Function (SIF)…

Read More...

  • by Dr. William Goble, CFSE
  • Wednesday, February 27, 2013
  • Software

The Real PFDavg Variables

I was recently asked how the PFDavg value in an exida FMEDA report was calculated. Those PFDavg values are calculated using the exSILentiaTM program. The person who posed the question was using the equations from Part 6 of IEC 61508 and got a different value. Why?

exSILentia

Read More...

  • by Dr. William Goble, CFSE
  • Tuesday, June 07, 2011
  • Certification

The Weakest Link

One of the objectives of new performance based standards like IEC 61508 is to allow performance metrics (like PFDavg for low demand systems) to identify the weak links in any proposed design.  Obviously, it is not necessary to put effort into design and spend money on areas…

Read More...

Two Billion Hours

When I studied Reliability Engineering in graduate school, I was taught that failure rate data came from field failure studies.  I assumed that operating companies always kept accurate records when a piece of equipment failed.  I also assumed that someone would investigate the failures and assign a root cause.…

Read More...

What is SIL compliance?

What is SIL compliance?

The Safety Integrety Level (SIL) of a product is determined by three things:

  1. The Systematic Capability Rating
  2. The  Architectural Constraints for the element
  3. The PFDavg Calculation for the product

The Systematic Capability Rating

Systematic Capability is established by having your quality management system audited per IEC 61508.…

Read More...

WHY are Failures Occurring at a Different Rate from Our Other Site?

WHY are Failures Occurring at a Different Rate from Our Other Site?

Site audits have shown many differences in how things are done from site to site. This impacts many variables in a safety instrumented system!

A key metric for process industry designs is called average Probability of Failure on Demand (PFDavg).  After several studies of many field failure and proof…

Read More...