The Avionic Certification Ecosystem: DO-178C, DO-254, ARP-4754A with ARP-4761A. Seminar and Workshop


Copyright AFuzion

The international standards titled RTCA DO-178C – Software Considera­­tions in Airborne Systems and Equipment Certification and DO-254 – Design Assurance Guidance for Airborne Electronic Hardware are the primary standards for commercial avionics software and hardware development. These standards provide recommendations for the production of airborne systems and equipment hardware and software.

Compliance with the objectives of DO-178C/DO-254 is the primary means  for meeting  airworthiness requirements and obtaining approval of software used in civil aviation products.  SAE ARP-4754A is officially titled “Guidelines for Development of Civil Aircraft And Systems”. It covers the development cycle for aircraft and avionics systems. It helps managing the aircraft/system’s development lifecycle ecosystem, implementing Safety activities per ARP-4761/A, defining and justifying Assurance Level, system architecture and requirements. ARP4761A is a guideline for aircraft safety. It is titled “Guidelines and Methods for Conducting the Safety Assessment Process on Civil Airborne Systems and Equipment”. ARP4761 is almost a tutorial on generalized safety and how to apply various theoretical analysis to assess ongoing development activities toward aircraft safety. Clearly, ARP4761A is tightly coupled with 4754A and lays the foundation for the most fundamental aspect of aircraft regulations: Safety.

This three-day seminar will introduce attendees to industry best practices for real-world avionic hardware and software development and how to avoid common DO-178C/DO-254/ARP-4754A/ARP-4761A mistakes. The first two days are intended to present the information necessary to help minimize DO-178C/DO-254 ARP-4754A/ARP-4761A risks and costs, while also maximizing hardware and software quality during avionics development. The instructor will guide attendees through topics such as aircraft safety, systems, software planning, software requirements, software design/code/test and the same hardware lifecycle. The entire ecosystem of aviation avionics hardware and software development will be summarized including DO-178C/DO-254/ARP-4754A/ARP-4761A’s relationship to other industry standards.

In the third day a workshop will be held about real Model Based Systems Engineering, Verification and Test Case Studies.

Learning Objectives

  • Evaluate the premise of DO-178C, DO.254, ARP-4754A, ARP-4761A
  • Identify how DO-178C, DO-254, ARP-4754A and ARP-4761A fit into the avionics development ecosystem
  • Identify hardware and software requirements, planning and standards, design, code, and testing for avionics
  • Describe basic configuration management and quality assurance
  • Analyze how to mitigate common DO-178C, DO-254, ARP-4754A, ARP-4761A risks and minimize cost while applying industry-best practices
  • Fully understand the objectives and the constraints of a DO-254-compliant and reverse compliant project

Who Should Attend
This course is designed for Avionics Hardware, Software and Systems Managers and Engineers seeking a higher level of understanding of the requirements and practices of using DO-178C and DO-254 in hardware and software development.

It is recommended that attendees have a basic understanding of hardware, software or IT.

Topical Outline


  • DO-178C, DO-254, ARP4754A, 4761A: High-Level Description, History, & Systems
  • Key Attributes of Avionics Certification & How to Conform
  • DO-178C/254 Basic Principles
  • Aircraft & Certification Ecosystem, Criticality Levels, Safety, ARP-4761, ARP-4754A
  • Safety Assessments: FHA, PSSA, SSA, FMEA, CCA:  Design Assurance Levels
  • Planning Documents: Cert, CM Plan, QA Plan, Development Plan, Verification Plan
  • How To Adopt 178C/254/4754A/4761
  • DO-254 Specifics, with CAST-27 & EASA CM-SWCEH-001
  • DO-178C/254 Requirements, Design, Code
  • DO-178C/254/4754A: Verification, Common Mistakes & Best Practices


  • System & Requirements Intro
  • System & SW/HW Requirements Detail
  • Software & Hardware Design – Coding/Logic – Testing: Details
  • SOI Versus Audits, & Annex A Usage with Checklist Review
  • Traceability: Safety-Systems-Hardware-Software
  • DO-178B to DO-178C: Differences
  • DO-331: Model Based Development
  • DO-332: Object Oriented Technology
  • DO-330 Tool Qualification
  • CMMI usage in Avionics Certification
  • Reducing Cost & Schedule
  • Questions & Answers

DAY THREE (Workshop)

  • Model Based System Engineering and Trade-Off Analysis by executing SysML Models
  • Support to DO-254 certification
    • Implementation Lifecycle of a new compliant Hardware and Software
    • Support to the certification for already developed systems
    • Practical examples
  • Benefits and constraints of using tools.
  • Are you confident about your tools? Using “confident” tools is a business requirement rather than a compliance requirement: even if you are not obliged to qualify your tools it is important for your business to ensure that tools and related environments work as expected over time.
  • Agile and DO-178C: a (im)perfect marriage?
  • Do you think that Agile is too lazy and DO-178C is too rigid? How could completely different approaches to software development could even co-exist? In this session, we are going to show how this (im)perfect marriage of such different philosophies could be the beginning of your “perfect” software lifecycle for DO-178C certification.


Vance Hilderman Mr. Vance Hilderman is a 25-year software and systems avionics engineering professional, focusing on safety-critical avionics software, systems, hardware development, and related technical products. Mr. Hilderman is the President and primary subject matter expert in avionics software, systems at Afuzion, Inc. Previously, Mr. Hilderman founded TekSci, and while serving as President and CTO, he led his company to become the largest independent avionics software services company in the world. Mr. Hilderman also co-founded HighRely Inc, an avionics certification consultancy company. In 2011, HighRely, Inc. was acquired by Atego/Artisan, with Mr. Hilderman remaining on as President and Manager of Aviation/Certification Services through 2013. Holding a BSEE and MBA from Gonzaga, along with a Masters in Computer Engineering from USC (Hughes Fellow), Mr. Hilderman is the principal author of dozens of technical whitepapers, plus the world’s best-selling book on avionics development/certification. Published by Avionics Communications and titled Avionics Certification – A Complete Guide To DO-178B & DO-254, Mr. Hilderman donates all royalties to the Boy Scouts of America.

Andrea Del Re He worked on the development of FPGA-based reconfigurable systems and is co-author of 36 international publications. From 2007, he is with Skytechnology as the head of the hardware design team, managing card development, FPGA development, test systems, and DO-254 certification support activities (DAL A, DAL B). She has 18 years of experience in FPGA design (Altera, Xilinx, Microsemi) and 10 years of experience in teaching (university courses and Altera training).

Gianfranco Nigro He has 26 years of experience in ruled markets (space, railways, and pharma-medical, automotive) and safety-relevant systems as a consultant on Independent V&V, Quality, and Safety. He worked for Alenia Spazio (now Thales Alenia Space Italia) for ten years as a Software Product Assurance engineer. He is TUV certified Functional Safety Engineer (ID: 4392/11) and Skytechnology employ.

Marina Berti With more than 27 years of experience on Software development, in particular in Automotive and Aerospace embedded software, Marina is a Software Lifecycle expert, also for safety-critical systems. She operates as a Project Manager able to ensure the achievement of all the project goals and guarantee delivery times and planned costs.

Massimo Bombino More than 25 years’ experience on Safety- and Business critical development, in particular embedded software. Model-based and testing expert, Massimo’s main mission is to help worldwide companies to improve the entire software life-cycle in order to identify criticalities, remove inefficiencies and cut time & costs, with the result of improving quality and safety.

Carmelo Tommasi Pioneer of the application of SysML to Systems Engineering, MBSE, reqts management, design, simulation, verification / validation and traceability for certification. More than 35 years of experience, he founded, among others, the Italian branches of Telelogic, Artisan Software Tools, and Atego. Introduced MBSE technology in several projects of the Army, the Air Force and the Navy, as well among major companies of Leonardo group. He regularly conducts training and consultancy on MBSE and avionics certification and is a lecturer in University Master’s on System Engineering
VENUE:                HOTEL ROYAL SANTINA, Via Marsala, 22, Roma, Italy

DATE, TIME:      November 14-15-16, 2018, First and second day 8.30- 16.30, third day 8.30-12.30

FEE:                       €1,500.00, 10% discount for the 2nd attendant from the same company, 30% discount for the                                        third on

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