1998-11-16

Failure Mode & Effects Analysis in Software Development 982816

The SAE J1739 standard for failure mode and effects analysis is modified and extended to the analysis of software designs. Two techniques are presented for using a software DFMEA (design failure mode and effects analysis) formalism: 1) using analysis and design tools and 2) using actual code. With a DFMEA, the software engineering team can anticipate software problems, can improve test design, can analyze software for potential safety and hazard issues, and can document analysis, design, and code walk-throughs.
Output analysis is used for the following: data context, data flows, software and hardware interfaces, and various levels of software configuration categories in order to systematically develop the software DFMEA. Also examined is the use of the software DFMEA with other techniques that are frequently used to study software safety issues; for example, fault trees and flow diagram methods.
Examples are presented of the use of the software DFMEA with data context, data flow, and code.

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