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ISO 26262 and You

By Jörg Grosse, Embedded Systems Engineering

Why Automotive electronics suppliers will make increasing use of formal tools to meet the standard’s strict requirements for verification and satisfy supply chain demand.


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Although standards are in play for many of the electronic products that consumers buy and use, it is rare for anyone except experts to know the details. There are partial exceptions such as USB, where users at least pay attention to which version of the standard is supported in their host and peripheral devices to ensure compatibility. This has not been the case for automobiles, although important standards exist. Until quite recently, ISO 26262 was a relatively obscure specification for the development of safety-related electrical and electronic systems within road vehicles.

Self-driving vehicles are changing many aspects of the status quo, raising a host of questions about liability, massive changes in infrastructure, and creation or loss of entire categories of jobs. ISO 26262 is right in the middle of these changes. Automotive manufacturers and their electronics components suppliers must follow this standard and will make a big deal about compliance. Even consumers might become more aware of safety requirements and demand that their new vehicles conform.


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