IEC 61511 Certification Training

Want to become a certified safety INSTRUMENTED system FS Specialist, TUV FS Engineer or TUV FS Professional according to IEC 61511? Then this is the right course for you.

Advance your career with the globally recognised certification and don't be left out of the job market any more.


Self-study STARTS ON Mar 01, 2024 ENDS ON May 31, 2024
Self-study STARTS ON Jun 01, 2024 ENDS ON Aug 31, 2024


Safety instrumented functions are the last layer of protection and sometimes the first layer of prevention in the process industry. They play a majorly important role in the protection philosophy of process plants. Yet, it is estimated that, worldwide, over 99% (you read that correctly) of SIFs are not SIL compliant.

In this training course, we help you become a internationally recognised certified FS Specialist, TUV FS Engineer or TUV FS Professional. We teach you all you need to know about functional safety and how it applies to safety instrumented systems. With this knowledge, we prepare you for the associated exam if you want to achieve a personal knowledge certificate.

With this training, the associated exam and certification, you become part of the elite professionals that will improve the compliance of Safety Instrumented Systems. You will contribute significantly to achieving safer operating plants.

Key Course Outcomes:

  • What functional safety means according to IEC 61511
  • How functional safety applies to your SIFs and SIS
  • What FSM is, how to use it effectively for your process operations
  • The most important FSM concepts
  • How end users use HAZOP and LOPA to decide what SIFs they need and how much SIL they must comply with
  • The four documents you need to plan and start building SIFs
  • The content of an SIS safety requirements specification (SRS)
  • How important hardware concepts like Type, Voting, HFT, SFF, etc. effect your equipment selection
  • The IEC 61511 rules for selecting equipment and building architectures including references to IEC 61508
  • Difference between diagnostic tests and proof tests, and why it matters.
  • What PFD means and how to calculate PFD for a safety function.
  • The role of the PFD calculations and different PFD modelling techniques.
  • The best languages for application logic
  • How to specify, develop and test application logic
  • The role of FAT, iFAT and SAT in relation to application logic
  • What end users need to do to operate, maintain and repair SIFs.

Hours estimated effort
Students enrolled
Q&A Sessions
The Curriculum


The main objective of this training program is to allow specialists involved in safety instrumented systems to learn the fundamentals of functional safety and the requirements of the functional safety standard IEC 61511. A second objective is to give anybody attending the course the opportunity to certify their knowledge through an exam.

Functional safety is a knowledge-based profession. Do you want to be a FS Specialist? Do you want to be certified? Want to know if you learn something from this course? Answer these questions for yourself:

  • Do you know when you need to follow IEC 61508 instead of IEC 61511?
  • Do you know that there are 2 SILs and 2 Risk Reduction Factors for each SIF?
  • Do you know why most companies fail at functional safety?
  • Do you know how many requirements a SIF needs to fulfil to claim SIL according to IEC 61511?
  • Do you know you know what there are two PFDs? Do you know what the difference is?
  • Do you know if application program testing is done by FAT?
  • Do you know who is responsible for the safety requirements specification?
  • Do you know why partial stroke testing is not a diagnostic test and why that matters?
If you know the answers to the above questions, congratulations, you are a Functional Safety Expert. If not, this course is for you.

IEC 61511 Certification Training

Module 1 - Introduction to Functional Safety

Your functional safety journey starts with understanding what functional safety actually is and what not. You will find out why it is important, who it is for and how it affects your job, your products/services, your company and even your society.

Key topics:

  • Accidents in the news
  • What is (functional) safety?
  • Legal status
  • Application area
  • Layers of protection
  • Safety instrumented systems
  • Random, common cause and systematic failures
  • History of functional safety
  • Functional safety standards
  • Safety integrity level
  • Safety instrumented functions
  • Random, common cause and systematic failures
  • What is functional safety?

Module 2 - Functional Safety Management

The concept of functional safety is the same across all industries. A safety system is a safety system no matter where you apply it. In the details it can be very different though. In this module we discuss a number of different standards as they apply to different industry. YOu cannot avoid functional safety any more and it is important to understand its the legal status.

Key topics:

  • Life cycle concept
  • Competency
  • Verification
  • Validation
  • Assessment
  • Audit
  • Documentation
  • Implementation and monitoring
  • Modifications
  • Configuration management
  • Tools

Module 3 - Hazard and Risk Analysis

Before you can apply functional safety to your safety function you first need to understand if you need a safety function in the first place. That is why industry applies hazard and risk analysis. Even if the risk is high, it does not mean you will install a safety solution that needs SIL. But if you do, you better correctly specify what this function is suppose to do.

Key topics:

  • How much safety is enough?
  • Risk management
  • Hazard identification
  • Hazard analysis
  • Risk reduction
  • HAZID, FMEA, FTA, HAZOP, ETA, LOPA, risk graph, risk matrix
  • Security risk assessment
  • SIF description
  • SIF Safety requirements specification

Module 4 - Planning the safety system

Once we have decide that we need a safety function, engineers get excited. They love designing and building stuff. But in the functional safety world you need to get your foundation right. You need to understand and apply functional safety management.

Key topics:

  • Planning for end users, system integrators
  • Implementation of SIS
  • Functional safety plan
  • Verification plan
  • Validation plan
  • Assessment plan
  • Audit plan
  • Overall SRS
  • Requirements for suppliers

Module 5 - Hardware design

We know which safety functions we want, we know how much SIL they need and we have the right people and organisation in place to build them. What are the rules? You cannot just build anything you want, you need to follow and understand these rules that may apply. That is what we discuss in this module.

Key topics:

  • IEC 61511 Hardware life cycle
  • De-energize versus energize
  • Low demand, high demand, continuous mode
  • Target failure measure (PFDavg, PFH)
  • Redundancy
  • Diversity
  • Voting
  • Hardware fault tolerance
  • Type A, Type B
  • Subsystem failure modes
  • Diagnostic tests
  • Proof tests
  • Failure distribution
  • Safe failure fraction
  • Diagnostic coverage
  • Architectural constraints
  • Route 1h and route 2h
  • Proven in use, Prior use
  • SIL Myths

Module 6 - Hardware Reliability - PFD

The most famous functional safety requirement in the SIL world is the probability calculation. In this module we explore its importance, what can be calculated and how to do it.

Key topics:

  • Reliability modelling
  • 6 steps to perform a PFD calculation
  • Simplified equations
  • Failure data
  • Why a PFD calculation?
  • Tools
  • PFD Myths

Module 7 - Software design

The functional safety standards do not require certification. But in our world, we cannot do without functional safety certification. In this module we explore why functional safety exists, what can be certified and what not.

Key topics:
  • IEC 61511b Software life cycle
  • A typical software problem
  • Application program safety requirements specification
  • Embedded software
  • Application software
  • Utility software
  • Software systematic capability - IEC 61508
  • Full variability languages (FVL)
  • Limited variability languages (LVL)
  • Fixed programming languages (FPL)
  • Application program development
  • Application program design
  • Application program
  • Application program testing
  • V-model

Module 8 - Certification, prior use, proven in use, and data

Certification is not required by the standard. It is a requirement from industry and thus highly important. We cannot do without it. In this module you learn about certification options, and how prior use / proven in use and data work together.

Key points:

  • Dilemma for end users, EPCs and system integrators
  • How to select the appropriate device
  • What is certification
  • What to look for in a certificate
  • What is prior use, proven in use
  • How to prove "prior use / proven in use"
  • Reliability data sources

Module 9 - Using the safety instrumented system

Two more topics, just to make it complete. A safety function that does not work in the environment where it is suppose to operate is not a good safety function. We need to address basic safety. And that includes nowadays also cyber security. In this module we address both.

Key points:

  • Installation and commissioning
  • Safety validation
  • Operation, maintenance and repair
  • Documentation
  • Modification and retrofit
  • Bypass procedures


Art the end there as an online exam for those that apply for the FS Specialist, TUV FS (Engineer or Professional) certificate.
KNowledge Certification

YOur certification options

You can follow this training with or without certification. When you choose to do the exam you can obtain a Risknowlogy FS Specialist certificate and additionally a TUV FS Engineer or TUV FS Professional certificate.

Dr Michel Houtermans

Founder of Risknowlogy, Functional Safety Master with 25+ years experience

Founder of Risknowlogy, Functional Safety Master
with 25+ years experIence

Dr. Michel Houtermans, Founder and Managing Partner of Risknowlogy GmbH, is an eminent expert in risk, reliability, and functional safety. With an MSc in Mechanical Engineering and a Ph.D. in Risk and Safety Management, he has significantly contributed to the industry. Under his leadership, Risknowlogy has become a global leader in functional safety certification, offering advanced training and tools for risk management. One of the first TUV Functional Safety Expert is renowned for his expertise, shared at various international forums. He has trained over 5000 engineers, developed numerous certification programs, and authored two books and many publications. His fluency in Dutch, English, and German further enhances his international reach and impact.

What students say about the program

IEC 61511 Certification Training

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Awesome course without certificate
Awesome course without certificate
Awesome course with Risknowlogy certificate
Awesome course with Risknowlogy certificate
Awesome course with Risknowlogy and TUV certificate
Awesome course with Risknowlogy and TUV certificate

* These prices are available only for online payments.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between Self-Study, Live Online and In-Person

Self-Study: Self-study refers to the process of learning independently without direct supervision or guidance from a teacher or instructor. In many instances we do have periodic live Q&A sessions.

Live Online: During live online training participants attend live sessions conducted by an instructor or trainer through MS Teams or Zoom

In-Person: During in-person training participants and trainers gather together physically in the same location for example your company office or a hotel.

Can I cancel and get a refund if I'm and not satisfied?

We want you to be nothing but satisfied with your Risknowlogy training course. The course comes with a 7 day money back guarantee.
Exception: Once you have earned your Course Certificate, you are no longer eligible for a refund, even if you earn your Certificate within the 7 days refund period.
Please note: Charged credit card cost may not be refundable.

When can I do the exam?

The exam is available at any time. You can do it as soon as you feel confident.

Can I take a retake exam?

Should you fail the exam you can contact us for a free retake exam. If you want to achieve a higher score, then you can take a retake exam, but it will not be for free. Contact us for details.

Does this training come with a certificate?

This training comes with two certificates. A knowledge FS Specialist certificate from Risknowlogy if you pass the exam and optionally a TUV SUD knowledge certificate (Engineer or Professional)

Will I get a personal Safety Passport®?

Yes, everybody who follows a Risknowlogy training gets a personal, onlineSafety Passport®.

Will I be listed on the TUV website?

Yes, if you opt for the TUV certificate and pass the exam. Here is the link.
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