DO-178B Software, Safety and Certification


Provides the fundamentals for developing and assessing software to the standard RTCA/DO-178B Software Considerations in Airborne Systems and Equipment Certification. Provides insight into the FAA's software review process and the FAA's software policy. Includes practical keys for successful software development and certification, common pitfalls of software development, and software challenges facing the aviation community.

Target Audience

Designed for Project Managers. Systems engineers, software developers, avionics engineers, systems integrators, aircraft designers, and others involved in development or implementation of safety-critical software. The focus is on civil aviation, certification, and use of RTCA/DO-178B; however, the concepts may be applicable for other safety domains, such as military, medical, nuclear, and automotive.

Fee: US$ 1,125

Class Time

Class time: 28 hours

Course Outline

First Day
  • Introductions and background; overview of existing standards related to software safety, tie between the system, safety, and software processes;
  • History, purpose, framework and layout of DO-178B;
  • Interpreting the DO-178B Annex A Tables;
  • DO-178B planning process;
  • DO-178B development and integration/test processes development objectives, high-level requirements, traceability, design (low-level requirements and architecture), code/integration, integration/test objectives, normal and robustness testing
Second Day
  • DO-178B verification processes: overview of verification, verification of requirements, design, code and testing;
  • DO-178B configuration management, quality assurance, and certification liaison processes: configuration management objectives and terminology, control categories;
  • Quality assurance (QA) objectives, DO-178B QA philosophy, SQA approaches;
  • Certification liaison objectives, DO-178B life cycle data;
  • Special topics related to DO-178B such as; partitioning and protection, structural coverage, dead and deactivated code, service history, Commercial-Off-The-Shelf (COTS) software
Third Day
  • FAA software policy and guidance;
  • Software review process;
  • User-modifiable and field-loadable software;
  • Change impact analysis, previously developed software, software reuse;
  • Integrated modular avionics;
  • Databases (DO-200A);
  • Overview of Complex hardware (DO-254);
  • Tool qualification.
Fourth Day
  • Assessing compliance to DO-178B;
  • Common mistakes in applying DO-178B;
  • Software challenges facing the aviation industry: object-oriented technology, off-shore development, model-based development, increased use of verification and development tools, use of real-time operating systems and other commercially available components;
  • Software reuse;
  • Summary