Introduction to Safety Instrumented Systems (IEC 61508/IEC 61511) – 3 Day Training Course


Those involved in HAZOPs, Safety Integrity Level (SIL) determination exercises (e.g. LOPA Workshops), and procurement decisions relating to Safety Instrumented Systems (SIS), need to have an understanding of the fundamental principles of functional safety in order that they are able to make informed judgements concerning risk parameters and the design options relating to the Safety Instrumented System. This three day course will consider the overall framework and the part that other engineered systems play together with Safety Instrumented System in the achievement of a tolerable risk

Click here for a brief Introduction to Functional Safety.

Course Learning Objectives

By the end of this course, participants should have an appreciation of:

  • Management of functional safety
  • Functional safety and the role of IEC 61508/IEC 61511 in achieving functional safety
  • The concept of risk reduction, risk reduction parameters and the concept of a tolerable risk
  • The concept of a Safety Instrumented Function with respect to its functionality and its performance
  • The role of a Safety Instrument System, other engineered measures and risk parameters in achieving a tolerable risk
  • Safety Integrity and Safety Integrity Level (SIL)
  • SIL determination concepts and methods
  • Modes of operation and associated Target Failures Measures
  • Hardware Safety Integrity, Systematic Safety Integrity & Systematic Capability
  • Hardware Fault Tolerance and Safe Failure Fraction
  • Functional Safety Assessment and Certification
  • Design essentials for IEC 61508
  • Design essentials for IEC 61511
  • Functional Safety Assessment for IEC 61508
  • Functional Safety Assessment for IEC 61511

Full Course Outline is available here

A shorter, more intense version if this course is available here:
Introduction to Safety Instrumented Systems (IEC 61508/IEC 61511) – 2 day course

Course Leader

Ron Bell, OBE, BSc (Hons), CEng, FIET

From 1992 until May 2006, Ron Bell was head of the Electrical and Control Systems Group in the Health and Safety Executive (the UK Safety Regulator). In 1998 he was appointed as one of the five UK members of the binational Channel Tunnel Safety Authority which is a post he held for 13 years.

He chaired one of the two IEC working groups responsible for developing IEC 61508 and also chaired one of the two teams responsible for the recent revision of IEC 61508. He is currently the chair of one of the two IEC Maintenance Teams responsible for the ongoing maintenance of IEC 61508.

He is a Director of Engineering Safety Consultants Ltd (ESC), a technical consultancy specialising in functional safety.

In 2005 he received the IEC 1906 Award for his work on functional safety and in particular IEC 61508. He received the OBE in the Queen’s 2006 New Year Honours.

Qualifications, Skills, Competence gained

  • Certificate setting out the key topics covered in the course
  • Knowledge of key concepts that underpin functional safety that will facilitate more effective communication and improved decision-making. With others involved in projects requiring expertise in functional safety;
  • Be able to be a more effective participant in HAZOP Workshops and SIL Determination Workshops;
  • Have a better understanding of both IEC 61508 and IEC 61511 and be better informed about the application of IEC 61508 and IEC 61511.

Who will benefit

The course is aimed at those who have responsibilities within the scope of IEC 61511. In particular:

  • Plant managers of process plants who have responsibility for the management of functional safety involving Safety Instrumented Systems;
  • Control and instrumentation engineers, chemical engineers, mechanical engineers, electrical engineers who have responsibility for HAZOPs and SIL determination exercises, specification, design, operation and maintenance of plants employing Safety Instrumented Systems.
  • Systems integrators of Safety Instrumented Systems being designed top meet the requirements of IEC 61511.
  • End users’ who wish to have a better understanding of the design and systems integration process so they are able to make informed decisions that have an impact the operation and maintenance phase (e.g. implications on future maintainability of the Safety Instrumented Systems).

Course Evaluation

Course evaluation will be via feedback form.


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