QNX Software Systems unveils new automotive safety program for ISO 26262

June 5, 2013  by  


Designed to help customers build ISO 26262-compliant digital instrument clusters and ADAS systems

At Telematics Detroit 2013, QNX Software Systems Limited is announcing its new QNX Automotive Safety Program for ISO 26262.

Designed to help accelerate the development of digital instrument clusters, advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), heads-up displays, and other products with functional safety requirements, the new program enables automotive companies to leverage QNX Software Systems’ proven competency in certifications, safety-critical systems, and automotive software design.

ISO 26262 is an international standard that defines the safety lifecycle of electrical, electronic, and software-based components in passenger vehicles. Like the IEC 61508 standard on which it is based, ISO 26262 is used to assess the risk of hazardous operational situations and to define safety measures that reduce the risk of failures.

The QNX Automotive Safety Program for ISO 26262 provides QNX customers with safety information required to build ISO 26262 compliant systems.

Key elements

Key elements include an example safety case based on the QNX® Neutrino® RTOS Safe Kernel, guidelines on safety-critical design for real-time OS-based systems, and characteristic functional safety requirements for using a QNX-based automotive Safety Element out of Context (SEooC), a pre-qualified safety element developed without a particular vehicle system in mind.

The program also provides a suite of professional services from QNX Software Systems, including priority support, training on recommended practices for building functional safety systems, and in-depth QNX® OS training for engineers.

QNX Software Systems will also consult with program participants to help address their system requirements. Designed with flexibility in mind, the program can be tailored to serve customers who have various levels of expertise in OS technology and functional safety.

“QNX Software Systems has a 30-year history in safety-critical systems, from nuclear power plants to the Space Shuttle, as well as proven competency in certifications to standards like IEC 61508 and IEC 62304,” said Grant Courville, director, product management, QNX Software Systems. “This expertise, together with our track record in hundreds of automotive production programs, makes QNX the ideal OS partner for companies building digital clusters and ADAS systems with functional safety requirements.”

Safety ecosystem

To address various aspects of customers’ functional safety requirements, QNX Software Systems is also building an ecosystem of vendors that offer complementary processors, tool chains, graphics technologies, and consulting for safety-critical systems.

Already, key industry players like Elektrobit, Freescale, NVIDIA, and Texas Instruments are supporting the QNX Automotive Safety Program for ISO 26262 — these companies have collaborated with QNX Software Systems on high-profile infotainment production programs and are active in production programs with safety requirements.


“We are excited to see QNX Software Systems bring its considerable expertise in functional safety to digital clusters and other automotive systems that require ISO 26262 compliance,” said Florian Bogenberger, manager, functional safety consultancy, Elektrobit (EB). “The services and artifacts provided by the QNX Automotive Safety Program for ISO 26262 form an ideal complement to EB products and we look forward to collaborating in safety-critical automotive projects, where EB is already very active.”


“As the design complexity of digital instrument clusters, driver assistance components, and other automotive systems increases, so does the need for functional safety certification. We are happy to see QNX Software Systems introduce a program that leverages the company’s deep experience in automotive systems and certification programs to help our joint automotive customers navigate the rigorous demands of the ISO 26262 certification process,” said Dan Loop, Automotive Microprocessor Business Development Manager at Freescale® Semiconductor.


“QNX Software Systems is a key automotive partner for NVIDIA, and together we’ve already delivered on highly successful production programs for Audi, VW, and Bentley,” said Taner Ozcelik, general manager, Automotive business unit, NVIDIA. “The QNX Automotive Safety Program signals a new phase for our partnership that will enable us to integrate new levels of in-vehicle graphics and functionality, while addressing strict safety requirements.”

Texas Instruments

“We are excited to support the new QNX Automotive Safety Program for ISO 26262, which complements TI’s functional safety expertise and Safe TI™-26262 certification-ready components,” said Curt Moore, Applications Processor General Manager, Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI). “For more than a decade, QNX and TI have helped automotive companies build state-of-the-art infotainment and telematics systems and, with this new program, we are ready to extend our proven collaboration into the growing markets for digital instrument clusters and ADAS systems.”

Designed for environments that have low tolerance for failure, QNX OS technology has a proven history in control systems for trains, nuclear plants, wind turbines, medical devices, process automation systems, and a host of other safety-critical applications, making it a field-proven foundation for systems that must meet stringent requirements of availability and reliability.

QNX Software Systems has licensed its technology for use in tens of millions of in-vehicle systems worldwide, including digital instrument clusters, hands-free systems, multimedia head units, connectivity modules, and 3D navigation systems.


The QNX Automotive Safety Program for ISO 26262 will be available to qualified automotive companies in Q3 2013.

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