System Design    

System design is the process of defining the architecture, components, modules, interfaces, and data for a system to satisfy specified requirements.

Requirements Capture, Breakdown and Allocation:

Typically in a large requirements driven design the customer will provide a fully defined set of high level requirements.

Requirements are entered into a requirements management tool or database. This can be a anything from a simple excel spreadsheet to a fully managed requirements tracking tool such as IBM DOORs.

In its simplest form the tracking tool enables changes in high level requirements to be managed efficiently and provide tracking to lower level requirements. This also helps when allocating requirements to different disciplines and at a later stage to enable compliance to be verified.

Requirements are broken down into smaller tasks and allocated to specific engineering disciplines, low level requirements are often derived by each discipline to provide more detail and granularity at a lower level.


Architecture Analysis and Definition:

Once the requirements are captured an architecture can be defined that will meet the requirements at the top level. Input from other disciplines is important at this stage and in particular preliminary modelling and simulation can be employed in order to de risk the process.


Validation & Verification strategy:

System design often encompasses a period of requirements validation and determining the method of compliance verification.


Performance Analysis:

If the system is large, the analysis of the overall performance of the system will be the responsibility of systems design.

    Additional tasks performed by system design can include:
  • Reliability studies and evaluation
  • System Reliability Analysis (MTBF, FPMH)
  • Failure Mode & Effect Analysis (FMEA)
  • Failure Mode, Effect & Criticality Analysis (FMECA)
  • Sub-System Failure Probability and Availability (FTA).


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