Linux In Safety Critical systems

Linux Foundation announced the launch of a new open source project focused on developing applications and Linux based systems for safety-critical systems.

A safety-critical system is one in which failures could result in property damage, loss of life, environmental damage or injury. First reported by Data Center Knowledge, the project aims at ensuring that such critical Linux-based systems remain failure proof.

Termed ELISA (Enabling Linux In Safety Applications), the objective of the project is to create a set of processes and tools for building systems that would operate smoothly in situations where failure could be devastating.

Today, computers are being used for a wide range of applications, some of which could have serious consequences in case of failure. These include medical devices, self-driving trains, autonomous vehicles, and smart factories where dangerous tasks are performed by computers.

Linux is emerging as a popular choice among all major industries owing to its ability to bring products much faster to the market and a significant reduction in critical design errors.

The only hurdle according to Kate Stewart, senior director at Linux Foundation, is the lack of documentation and tools that are required to demonstrate that Linux systems would meet the necessary safety requirements.

To start off, the project aims to build on its SIL2LinuxMP project which has been involved in developing certification programs for real-time Operating Systems that run on off-the-shelf devices. Heinz Egger, CEO of Linutronix, hopes that the ELISA project would establish Linux in the world of industrial control.

The project has a few well-established founding members including automakers Toyota and BMW, IOT developer ARM and, industrial systems developers KUKA and Linutronix. Stewart added that “with the formation of Elisa, we will be able to leverage the infrastructure and support of the broader Linux Foundation community that is needed to make this initiative successful.”

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