Over 60 new products received functional safety or cybersecurity certification this year. Those products and more can be found on our Safety Automation Element List. Most significant to me are the new product categories including:
- Integrated circuits
- Middleware packages
- Complete safety systems
exida Certification has expanded its scope of accreditation to new standards including ISO 26262 for automotive. These new standards are based on IEC 61508. It is exciting to see the science and principles of functional safety spreading to so many different industries.
The exida failure database has received many new field failure studies. Using a total of over twenty-five billion unit operating hours, many new component failure modes have been identified. Failure rates have been refined for new operational profiles. The Maintenance Capability models in exSILentia, which account for site specific failure rates rather than product specific failure rates, have been refined based on the more complete data set. exida's Predictive Analytics models which are used to predict data integrity in field failure data sets are growing.
Unfortunately the cybersecurity threat has grown. The rapid spread of information including "hackers kits" on the internet have made things worse. "Researchers" seem to work full time finding vulnerabilities in control and safety equipment so they can publish the results and claim the glory of the find. The RISI database is showing this trend. Fortunately many layers of defense are available. Many control equipment suppliers are hardening their products and getting them cyber certified. Site audits are rapidly being done with new defense layers installed. This is a different world than functional safety. There is more going on than I know about. Some of this business is secret, secret stuff - apparently with governments involved. The end objective is clear however: create control systems and safety systems with sufficient integrity to protect our resources. Progress has been made in 2012.