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Development of complex flight critical systems

from the management perspective

Development and operation of complex systems facing to the difficulty of complete observability and controllability. Failures in the systems may propagate in a dormant and uncontrollable manner, and in its effects nonlinear to subcomponents, adjacent systems and potentially to the entire system aircraft if not appropriately mitigated. The potential impacts can be malfunctions or accidents with severe consequences to affected individuals as well as to those organisations having developed and placed their products on the market. This course pays attention for the inadequateness of human thinking and acting in complex environments and in interactions with complex systems. From those insights the course will derive requirements for Quality Management and Design Assurance Systems for Flight Critical Systems. There objectives must be to reduce the likelihood of residual design errors which may impact the safety of an aircraft to an acceptable minimum.


Day one:

  • Target of the Course
  • Incidents and accidents, implications and later effects on two examples.
  • Characteristics of complex systems
    • Observability, Controllability, Analysability
  • The human thinking and acting in complex environments
    • Complexity, Uncertainty, Fear...
  • System Safety, Reliability, Customer Satisfaction 
    • The Management Dilemma. Strategies for its Mitigation
    • Safety and Reliability. Multiplicities or Counter Actors in Terms of System Safety …?

Day two:

  • Summary from day one and Conclusions for Certification Procedures for civil Aviation Products
    • Basics in Aviation Laws ICAO Annex 8
    • ICAO; EASA Part 21; Design Organisation Approvals; Certification Specifications; Federal Aviation Regulations etc.
    • The Principals of Type Certification
    • Continuing Airworthiness
    • Differences EU (EASA) and USA (FAA); A glance to China (CAAC)
  • Quality Management- and Design Assurance Systems
    • ISO9100; ARP4754A; ARP4761; DO-178C; DO-254 from Management Perspective and Company Targets
    • Validation, Verification; Safety Assessments. The V-Modell, State of the Art…?
  • Aviation Laws and Product Liability

Interest group

  • Staff Member of Aviation Authorities
  • Managers from areas of System Design, Certification, Design Assurance and Quality Management.


  • Development, Certification, Production, Customer Support related to Complex Flight Critical Systems with DAL A and B (Flight Controls, FADEC)

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