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Functional safety is the concept of securing safety by reducing risks to an acceptable level instead of essentially eliminating risks. Methods to secure safety include designing that prevents any impact on safety even in the case of failures or introducing such safety devices as protective walls.

Application areas of functional safety have been expanding, given the growing demand for safety over recent years.

Functional safety through electrical and electronic methods, including use of computers and software, was standardized in 2000 as IEC 61508. Establishment of standards specific to respective areas is also underway based on this IEC 61508. For example, ISO 26262 was established in 2011 as the functional safety standard for electrical and electronic controlling in the area of automobiles.

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