New Euro Machinery Safety Guideline

Wednesday, March 14, 2012 @ 05:03 PM gHale

By Nicholas Sheble
“The new standard accommodates the advances in technologies and that is the main advantage,” John D’Silva said Wednesday referring to the European safety guideline for machinery – ISO 13849-1.

“Further it corrects deficiencies in EN 954-1,” he said during a Siemens technology Webinar Transitioning to ISO 13849-1: Changes Required and Helpful Tools.

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ISO 13849-1 Safety of machinery: Safety-related parts of control systems (SRP/CS) provides safety requirements and guidance on the principles for the design and integration of safety for control systems, including the design of software.

It specifies characteristics that include the performance level necessary to carrying out safety functions. It applies to SRP/CS, regardless of the type of technology and energy in place whether electrical, hydraulic, pneumatic, mechanical, or others and for all kinds of machinery.

This year a new European safety guideline for machinery makes an old one obsolete as ISO 13849-1 corrects defects in EN 954-1 and addresses the dramatic changes in technology the older standard was incapable of handling, in particular, determining the safety of programmable products.

As well, ISO 13849-1 directs users to perform risk assessments to determine the possibility that injuries can occur. While EN ISO 13849 addresses concerns, quite a few complex calculations are a part of the safety system design to achieve compliance.

D’Silva, an integrated safety expert at Siemens, provided an overview of changes in the new machine safety standard and spent a good share of the webinar’s time on the software-based tools that assist in achieving compliance to the standards.

The tools are SISTEMA (Safety Integrity Software Tool for the Evaluation of Machine Applications) and SET (Safety Evaluation Tool).

The SISTEMA software utility provides developers and testers of safety-related machine controls with comprehensive support in the evaluation of safety vis-à-vis ISO 13849-1. It enables one to model the structure of the safety-related control components based upon the designated architectures, thereby permitting automated calculation of the reliability values with various levels of detail, including the Performance Level (PL).

The SISTEMA program is available in English.

The Safety Evaluation Tool for the IEC 62061 and ISO 13849-1 standards is a TÜV-tested online tool that supports the fast and reliable assessment of your machines’ safety functions. One can realize a standard-compliant report that serves as documentation as a proof of safety.

See the process for downloading SET.

This webinar is one in a series from Siemens.

Nicholas Sheble ( is an engineering writer and technical editor in Raleigh, NC.

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