Electronics > Microcontrollers

Multi Microcontroller Functional Safety design Consideration

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Hi ,

While designing the System with the multiple Microcontroller. if one MCU is directed to check the heath of the systems.
Other than monitoring the following things, what else we can monitor to ensure stable design
1) Voltage monitoring
2) power supply Current monitoring
3) Communication Monitoring.
4) Vital signal monitoring
5) few points temperature monitoring.
6) Clock monitoring is possible??
7) being an watch dog monitor to another system.

Is there any other things  that we can monitor...'

pls advice.


Andy Chee:
A similar principle to the watchdog, you can monitor a vital status flag being set/reset in a subroutine, or indeed a vital ASCII or BCD code.

If that flag or code isn't valid, then you trigger the watchdog.

Of course such a technique may be overkill for simple systems.

What does your risk register and failure mode analysis highlight as critical functionality or risks that need addressing? You could monitor all kinds of things, but you need to establish what and why.

6) Clock monitoring is possible??

If you mean monitoring the clock is running on other MCUs?

The other MCUs would need to output their clock signal on a GPIO pin. The actual signal would be derived from the main MCU clock so it runs at a much slower speed e.g. 1Hz. The MCU that does that health monitoring could read these GPIO pins.

In many MCU, if the main xtal fails, the clock will fallback to internal RC

External "Clock monitoring", when at all possible, doesn't make much sense, that's what watchdogs are for (among other things).

Otherwise, more generally speaking, I'm not sure there's really a benefit of designing a system with multiple processors, with one dedicated to "control" what the rest does. It's usually more effective to have several do the same job (redundancy scheme). That's just a very general consideration, the whole topic could be detailed in several books, and still not be covered.


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