Motivation

What is today’s challenge in product development? – Among many other requirements, stakeholders ask for …

  • … shorter product development and service times,
  • … products with an ever increasing degree of complexity and environmental interaction
  • … and higher demands regarding reliability, availability, safety and security – or: dependability.

Asymmetric V-chart of product development, indicating failed test

However, analyzing faults within the “usual” safety process often causes a lot of effort. In many organizations and companies it is classically based on many documents that have to be authored, understood, reviewed, processed – with high potential for misinterpretation, late error detection and budget overruns.

Quite often this leads to a very imbalanced V-chart of product development, leaving too little time for proper testing or – even worse – when final testing fails and significant rework is required.

This challenge can only be answered with new, integrated solutions for the engineering, production and service process.

What in more than 2 decades for us has proven to be useful is proper system analysis supported by “buildingblock”-like, object-oriented modeling. Combined with innovative simulation procedures this allows easy interactive behavior evaluations, even of underdetermined or overdetermined systems.

Cartoon showing hierarchy of systems; (c) Fotolia.com, jokatoons, 14348631 (adapted)Capturing the functional dependency or even the physical behavioral knowledge of items and their faults in model-blocks allows automatic evaluation of their consequences. The RAMS-analyses may then come as a “by-product” during system development, almost without extra effort.

“Constraints” play a key role here to represent as much knowledge as possible in a reusable library. This not only conserves the knowledge of domain experts – who might not be available soon due to retirement or job-hop – for the future, but also paves the way to executable specifications, strongly supporting the proper formulation of requirements on the correct level.

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