Reasoning with failures

Hamid Jahanian*, Annabelle McIver

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review


Safety Instrumented Systems (SIS) protect major hazard facilities, e.g. power plants, against catastrophic accidents. An SIS consists of hardware components and a controller software – the “program”. Current safety analyses of SIS’ include the construction of a fault tree, summarising potential faults of the components and how they can arise within an SIS. The exercise of identifying faults typically relies on the experience of the safety engineer. Unfortunately the program part is often too complicated to be analysed in such a “by hand” manner and so the impact it has on the resulting safety analysis is not accurately captured. In this paper we demonstrate how a formal model for faults and failure modes can be used to analyse the impact of an SIS program. We outline the underlying concepts of Failure Mode Reasoning and its application in safety analysis, and we illustrate the ideas on a practical example.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationFormal Methods and Software Engineering
Subtitle of host publication22nd International Conference on Formal Engineering Methods, ICFEM 2020 Singapore, Singapore, March 1–3, 2021, Proceedings
EditorsShang-Wei Lin, Zhe Hou, Brendan Mahoney
Place of PublicationCham, Switzerland
PublisherSpringer, Springer Nature
Number of pages17
ISBN (Electronic)9783030634063
ISBN (Print)9783030634056
Publication statusPublished - 2020
Event22nd International Conference on Formal Engineering Methods, ICFEM 2020 - Singapore, Singapore
Duration: 1 Mar 20213 Mar 2021

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
Volume12531 LNCS
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


Conference22nd International Conference on Formal Engineering Methods, ICFEM 2020


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