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This paper addresses the use of integrated system simulation for risk and reliability assessment. The focus is on the reliability of interactive systems. It is argued that the reliability depends on the components in the system (the humans and the machines), but that it cannot be expressed as a simple aggregation of the component reliabilities. Instead it is necessary to consider the complexity of the interaction in its own right. This leads to a concern for human reliability, and in particular the reliability of human cognition, as making a fundamental contribution to the overall system reliability. It is argued that the differences between humans and machines are of such a nature that one cannot use the same methods for analysis. Instead, human reliability analysis requires a dynamic simulation of the dominant performance features - preferably in the form of a cognitive model but not necessarily as the instantiation of a specific theory. Finally, a description is given of an analysis tool called the System Response Generator. This tool integrates dynamic simulations of a process and a human operator as they interact in a scenario. The SRG is able to compute how a given scenario may develop, and to trace the possible alternatives. It is being implemented as a stand-alone system with clearly defined protocols for interfacing to separate process and operator simulations.

Additional information

Authors: CACCIABUE P C, JRC Ispra (IT);HOLLNAGEL E, Computer Resources International, Space Division, Birkeroed (DK);ROUHET J-C, Aerospatiale Protection Systèmes, Mantes La Jolie (FR)
Bibliographic Reference: Paper presented: 7th International Symposium on Loss Prevention and Safety Promotion in the Process Industries, Taormina (IT), May 5-8, 1992
Availability: Available from (1) as Paper EN 36667 ORA
Record Number: 199210464 / Last updated on: 1994-12-02
Original language: en
Available languages: en
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