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Software Failure Modes and Effects Analysis

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1 Author(s)
Reifer, D.J. ; Software Management Consultants; 2922 West 227th Street; Torrance, CA 90505 USA.

This concept paper discusses the possible use of failure modes and effects analysis (FMEA) as a means to produce more reliable software. FMEA is a fault avoidance technique whose objective is to identify hazards in requirements that have the potential to either endanger mission success or significantly impact life-cycle costs. FMEA techniques can be profitably applied during the analysis stage to identify potential hazards in requirements and design. As hazards are identified, software defenses can be developed using fault tolerant or self-checking techniques to reduce the probability of their occurrence once the program is implemented. Critical design features can also be demonstrated a priori analytically using proof of correctness techniques prior to their implementation if warranted by cost and criticality.

Published in:

Reliability, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:R-28 ,  Issue: 3 )