Functional Safety Assessment

New safety related standards put requirements on the use of independent safety assessment in parallel with the development of components / systems. Examples of such standards are:


  • IEC 61508 ”Functional safety of electrical / electronic / programmable electronic safety-related systems”
  • IEC 61511 "Functional safety-Safety instrumented systems for the process industry sector"
  • IEC 62061  "Safety of machinery-Electrotechnical aspects"

SP can work as an independent party and is accredited by SWEDAC for functional safety assessment according to IEC 61508.


New standards created for the area of functional safety stress the importance of involving an independent person in product development. The rationale behind is that someone not deeply involved with development work shall have the opportunity to give comments and to evaluate if requirements from standards are fulfilled or not. These new safety related standards cover the whole product’s lifecycle from the concept phase to a complete product. Support from an independent party is important in all phases of development and concerns e.g. risk analysis, requirement specification, hardware/software design and verification/validation.


The chosen SIL (Safety Integrity Level) for a safety function decides if independent safety assessment can be made by the company itself or by an independent party like SP, see e.g. Table 5 in IEC 61508-1.


Even in the case when there is no strict requirement in the standard for using an independent party it can anyhow be efficient from marketing/selling perspectives since it can then be stressed that an external expert has compiled the assessment in an independent report or certificate.


Lowest degree of independence  SIL 1  SIL 2  SIL 3  SIL 4
 Independent person   HR  HR  NR  NR
 Independent department  -   HR   HR   NR
 Independent organisation   -   -   HR   HR
HR = ”Highly Recommended”
NR = ”Not Recommended”

Related Information

Contact Persons

Johan Hedberg

Phone: +46 10 516 50 71

Jan Jacobson

Phone: +46 10 516 56 97

RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Phone 010-516 50 00, E-mail

The RISE institutes SP, Innventia and Swedish ICT have merged in order to become a stronger research and innovation partner for businesses and society.
During 2017 will be one of several websites within RISE. Please visit for more information about RISE.