Functional Safety Trainee
The Functional Safety Trainee develops the theoretical background and models required to support detailed SIL calculations.
Beldick Automation is a provider of industrial automation solutions for companies active in petrochemicals, oil & gas production and refining as well as power generation industries. Beldick Automation has a track record of designing and constructing control and safeguarding systems that meet the highest standards in reliability, safety and environmental performance. Key products include Burner Management Systems for gas and oil combustion applications, Process Control Systems for HRSG units (Heat Recovery Steam Generation) and the safeguarding and control of industrial heating processes and oil & gas treatment processes. All systems adhere to Functional Safety (IEC 61508) standards.
Beldick Automation is based in Ede, Netherlands and employs some 15 staff.
The term Functional Safety applies to electronic and programmable electronic systems that provide a function that is considered critical to the safety of personnel and the integrity of the operated plant. For instance, a system that prevents dangerously high pressures in a gas or oil treatment plant, by measuring the pressure at various locations and by operating valves to a pressure relief system (such as a flare) is a Functional Safety System. Other terms used for such systems include Emergency Shutdown System, Safeguarding System and Safety Instrumented System.
The Functional Safety science studies the likelihood of hardware failures and software failures, which in turn can have a common cause, random causes or systematic causes. Different strategies have been developed to reduce failure rates, such as a clear definition of failure modes, the use of redundant hardware, voting systems for inputs and outputs, tight control over software development, and so on. The design failure rate, or Probability of Failure on Demand, of (part of) a Safety Instrumented System is a measure for the Safety Integrity Level that this (part of the) system can achieve.
To calculate the PFD, it is important to study the failure rates of all the components of such system, including sensors (often pressure transmitters), electronic programmable systems (often PLC’s), any input or output signal modifiers and the actuating element (often a valve). These components can be arranged in a redundant fashion (multiple transmitters, multiple valves, multiple PLC’s) using voting algorithms (one-out-of-two, two-out-of-three) to reduce the overall PFD. The complexity of the potential choice of arrangements has grown to the extent that proper mathematical modelling is now required to make these choices. Much of the mathematical modelling is based around Markov chains.
Key tasks are as follows:
- Familiarise with typical field instrumentation (transmitters, valves)
- Familiarise with typical Safety PLC’s – one Safety PLC is available for programming and testing
- Familiarise with typical process applications by studying P&ID’s and
Cause & Effect Diagrams
- Collect failure rate information on key components
- Study Markov chain analysis and propose tools (PC based) for modeling
- Model failure modes of individual components and combinations of components
using the Markov modeling tool
- Calculate PFD´s and SIL levels for typical system configurations
- Summarise the findings and draw conclusions
- Present the findings to staff
The Functional Safety Trainee reports to the Manager Engineering or to the Manager Business Development (to be discussed).
Minimum qualifications and requirements
- In depth understanding of statistical analysis
- Experience with mathematical modeling tools (for instance Matlab)
- Experience with modeling systems (this can be control systems, electronics, process simulation or similar)
- Affinity with electronics and programmable electronic systems
- The work is to take place at Beldick´s Ede office with limited travel to sites for familiarization purposes
- A competitive monthly allowance
- Accomodation in Ede or Wageningen for the duration of the project
- Free use of the company fitness facilities for the duration of the project
Contact Arnold Groot, general manager Beldick Automation on 0318 – 648390
or firstname.lastname@example.org for enquiries.