exida explains Blog

Random versus Systematic Faults: What’s the difference?

Random versus Systematic Faults: What’s the difference?

I saw and responded to a LinkedIn discussion on this very issue, where someone had asked “if I have a misaligned limit switch that fails dangerously, then is it random or systematic? “.  This is an intriguing question because many view human error as being systematic and, whereas, this…

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Cloud Robotics – Safe & Secure?

Cloud Robotics – Safe & Secure?

Cloud computing, huge potential! That’s what the automation, automotive, and robotics industries are all excited about.

So, what is cloud computing and how does it affect safety?

Cloud computing utilizes servers on the internet to process, store and manage data. There is a much longer NIST definition

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Contractor Cybersecurity Training - Why Do You Need It?

Contractor Cybersecurity Training - Why Do You Need It?

Today, we are going to talk a little bit about Contractor Cyber Training.  What's in a good contractor cyber training course?  Why do you need one?  Why aren't policies, practices, and contract language enough?

Today's operators of industrial production facilities frequently utilize contract…

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Why Proof Test Coverage Is So Important For A SIF to Achieve Its Target SIL?

Why Proof Test Coverage Is So Important For A SIF to Achieve Its Target SIL?

This is a question I often get asked when I’m teaching our FSE100 course on Functional Safety, when we discuss the purpose of Proof Testing and coverage.  It’s amazing how many end users assume perfect proof testing (i.e. 100% coverage), that is capable of finding, all the…

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Alarm Management and the Great American Solar Eclipse

Alarm Management and the Great American Solar Eclipse

Throughout history, total solar eclipses have been a significant event. In primitive societies, eclipses were viewed with fear or as important omens. In the US, the upcoming “Great American Solar Eclipse” is creating much excitement. From buying “official” eclipse-viewing glasses, to paying $1500 or more…

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IEC 61508 Functional Safety Certificates - To Accept or not to Accept?

IEC 61508 Functional Safety Certificates - To Accept or not to Accept?

I get an email that includes a “certificate” of some sort most every week.  The sender asks “Can I accept this certificate?”  Or the sender might ask “Are these failure rates valid for the process industries?” 

At exida we have some specific criteria we use when performing third party…

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Outer Banks: How Could This Massive Power Outage Happen?

Outer Banks: How Could This Massive Power Outage Happen?

I, like many others, was stunned to hear that there was a major power outage covering the Outer Banks. Being an engineer, my instincts were to immediately investigate what happened and what steps occurred to lead to that point. Even before I did research, my mind was already asking…

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Making the Most of Customer Feedback

Making the Most of Customer Feedback

Your organization gets information, feedback, and requests from customers all the time.  It’s up to you to do some preliminary analysis and determine what the customer really wants.  Do they want to buy something?  Do they want to complain about something?  Do they have a need for which no…

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exida Cyber Blog Series 04 - Cybersecurity Metrics, Diagnostics, and Alarms: What’s What?

exida Cyber Blog Series 04 - Cybersecurity Metrics, Diagnostics, and Alarms: What’s What?

Co-written by Todd Stauffer, Director of Alarm Management Services at exida

A wise man once said, “You can’t manage what you don’t measure.” Let's apply this to the world of cybersecurity to discuss the importance of cybersecurity metrics and how they are different from a cyber diagnostic and a…

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IEC 61508 is flexible, but is it Agile?

IEC 61508 is flexible, but is it Agile?

Agile development is a much better fit with IEC 61508 compliant software development than one might think at first blush.

Agile is not a methodology but rather a set of values and principles stated in the Agile manifesto. These principles are designed to force introspection and reflection…

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Why Run-to-Fail Is Not A Good Maintenance Strategy For SIS

Why Run-to-Fail Is Not A Good Maintenance Strategy For SIS

exida Cyber Blog Series 03 - Process Safety and Cybersecurity, Related or Still Distant Cousins?

exida Cyber Blog Series 03 - Process Safety and Cybersecurity, Related or Still Distant Cousins?

To be clear, the above title is meant to capture your attention. We all understand and know that it is unusual for a Process Safety engineer and the IT architect to possess detailed knowledge of both safety and security. In today’s world, the operators, engineers, design and support personnel of…

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Making Use of Leading and Lagging Indicators – Are You Using These for Functional Safety?

Making Use of Leading and Lagging Indicators – Are You Using These for Functional Safety?

Some of you reading this may not be aware or familiar with the terms “leading” and “lagging” indicators, when applied to Functional Safety.  The concept isn’t new but does provide significant benefit when applying this to Functional Safety because, if used correctly, these indicators can help significantly improve performance. …

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exida Cyber Blog Series: 02 - Does your position qualify as a Cyber Sensitive position?

exida Cyber Blog Series: 02 - Does your position qualify as a Cyber Sensitive position?

That’s a great question.

What is a Cyber sensitive position?

A cyber sensitive position is a subset of a job position description that can be graded as Ultra, High, Medium or Low sensitivity with respect to cybersecurity assets and associated potential consequences that may impact an operating company.

What…

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Why Is Functional Safety An Important Piece of Process Safety Management?

Why Is Functional Safety An Important Piece of Process Safety Management?

It’s interesting to note that with the release of the 2016 edition of IEC61511, there’s more emphasis being placed on the need for better functional safety management.  Having taught many courses on Functional Safety over the past few years, I find that most of the…

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