The term tool qualification triggers an unpleasant feeling and uncertainty in many people who deal with functional safety. IEC61508 requires the certification of software tools used for software development. Other functional safety standards also require similar measures. Unfortunately, however, the same terms are not always used. IEC61508 uses the term “certified tools”, often the term “qualified tools” or tool qualification is also used.
Besides the different terms, there are also very different, partly very individual, interpretations of what exactly is to be understood by the topic. The following article attempts to contribute to the clarification of open questions in this complex of topics. The following 3 questions will be answered:
- Why do functional safety standards require the tool qualification?
- What are the requirements of IEC61508?
- How to deal with the topic in a meaningful way?