A common approach to the critical challenges of applying functional safety to autonomous systems.

A focus on functional safety is important for autonomous systems due to their reliance on technology (i.e. hardware and software) for managing safety-critical functions. As the mining industry innovates through automation, applicable international standards are not yet clearly defined and requirements for managing functional safety are unclear. Further, adoption is uneven across the industry and suppliers are at varying stages of maturity in terms of managing functional safety for autonomous systems. 

This guideline, currently in review, provides a common approach to applying functional safety to autonomous systems by interpreting existing international standards within the context of the mining industry’s current maturity and offering guidance on the communication requirements to support change management and effective operation. 


  • Important reference materials and standards that are relevant to applying functional safety to various aspects of autonomous mining systems
  • An example of a functional safety lifecycle for applying autonomous systems in mining that identifies key expectations and responsibilities for providing information, documentation, and support at each stage
  • Guidance on software verification and validation, competency management, cybersecurity and assurance documentation
  • Launched

  • Content Development

  • Editing

  • Review

  • Published


Mar 2020 | Update on the guideline review 

Project has made significant progress, feedback received from Working Group has been revised, pending software section has been incorporated, and is currently in its final stages.

Feb 2020 | Update on the guideline review

The project leaders met twice with representatives from ICMM, EMESRT and CMEIG to review our groups’ respective work on the topic. As a result of these meetings, an updated draft of the guideline will soon be circulated back to the working group for further review.

Dec 2019 | Working Group Review 

The draft guideline was circulated within the working group for review.

Jan 2019 | Project wins award

Shortly after it was launched in 2018, this project won the Mining Magazine Safety Award. Read more about why here.