Imagination receives ISO 26262 process conformance from HORIBA MIRA

20th May 2020
Joe Bush

Imagination Technologies has achieved ISO 26262 process conformance following a successful audit of its Functional Safety Management System by HORIBA MIRA. HORIBA MIRA is a global provider of engineering, research, and test services to the automotive, defence, aerospace and rail sectors. OEMs, Tier 1s and semiconductor vendors can integrate Imagination’s IP with the confidence and knowledge that it is ISO 26262 capable.

Around 50% of Imagination’s business is in automotive, with its GPUs in use in applications such as a vehicle displays, infotainment instrument clusters, etc. ISO 26262 is the standard that addresses risk in the automotive industry by ensuring that electronic systems are designed to be functionally safe, thereby mitigating against any potential flaws that might cause failure.

Increasingly in the automotive industry GPUs are being used to present safety related information to drivers, and so come within the scope of industry standards such as ISO 26262, which the major OEMs and tier one suppliers are using to design safety related electronic systems in vehicles and functions like brake steering, power train control etc. One of the things that ISO 26262 requires is independent scrutiny of all functional safety activities - and it is set up in such a way that larger companies can effectively do those reviews internally.

Dr David Ward, Senior Technical Manager – Functional Safety at HORIBA MIRA, said: “At the start of our engagement with Imagination, it was clear that the company had a strong safety culture and leadership to ensure functional safety, developed from its extensive experience in the automotive industry. Imagination has responded to observations in a very positive and timely manner.” 

David Higham, Principal Functional Safety Engineer at Imagination Technologies added: “One of the key elements that the standard calls for is independence of the audit and the assessment activities, so this is why we wanted an external company with the pedigree that Horiba Mira has, to be able to come in and look with no conflict of interest, with a clear head and with the technical expertise behind them, to be able to appraise our processes.

“There's a requirement for suppliers in the automotive supply chain, who are developing safety related components, elements or systems, to be able to demonstrate compliance with ISO 26262. So, by working with Horiba Mira as an external independent auditor, it has allowed us to demonstrate that capability, which we can then build upon with our applications, software and hardware IP that we are selling to customers.

“You might think of Imagination as being fairly low down in the hierarchy of a product, but actually we provide quite a lot of the functionality, hence the need to have this really strong proof of our safety capabilities and credentials within automotive. We don’t just provide a simple resistor, we basically provide the processing core to a lot of these very complex, mathematically intensive processing applications.”

Jamie Broome, Senior Director Automotive Business, Imagination Technologies, concluded: “Imagination has been working with industry leaders on safety for the last decade and this statement of process conformance represents the culmination of our work. It demonstrates our commitment to safety and quality, raising our capabilities in this area to a new level. This ensures that our hardware and software solutions continue to lead the industry and remain first choice for our automotive customers. We selected HORIBA MIRA based on its leadership position in the development of ISO 26262, its world-class knowledge and capabilities as an independent audit and assessment organisation.”

Imagination and HORIBA MIRA are also active contributors to the development of the automotive standards ISO 26262, ISO 21448 (SotIF), ISO/SAE 21434 (cybersecurity), and industry guidance such as the MISRA Guidelines for Automotive Safety Arguments.

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