Staying safe in an uncertain world

News | Posted on Sunday 31 May 2020

New AAIP report presents framework for assuring the safety of highly automated driving systems

text: assuring the safety of highly automated driving: state-of-the-art and research perspectives

Highly automated and autonomous vehicles will bring numerous benefits to society. The progress being made by manufacturers and developers is fast-paced and compelling. But we are not yet convinced of the safety of these systems.

This report, jointly authored by Programme Fellow Professor Simon Burton (Director Vehicle Systems Safety, Robert Bosch GmbH) and AAIP Senior Research Associate Dr Richard Hawkins, explores the challenges involved in assuring the safety of highly automated driving systems.

Professor Burton says: “The greatest barrier to safe automated driving is functional sufficiency. In other words, how do we ensure that, at a functional level, the system correctly interprets its complex environmental conditions and makes the decisions that ensure safety for all under all possible circumstances and in a legally compliant manner?”

The report presents a framework which structures the approaches for arguing the functional sufficiency of highly automated driving. The framework starts with a top-level definition of an acceptable level of safety and includes domain analysis, system design and a verification and validation strategy.

“Functional sufficiency is a pre-requisite for the safe introduction of this technology into our daily lives,” says Dr Hawkins. “This report is an excellent introductory guide to assuring the safety of highly automated driving, and is essential reading for anyone working in the automotive field.”

Read the report