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DO-254 Glossary of Terms

While not a comprehensive list, what follows are terms you may encounter as you begin to engage in DO-254 projects. Visit the FAA website for a complete glossary list.

Society of Automotive Engineers, some subset of this group specializes in aeronautics
Standards and Recommended Practices
Special Committee, anything that starts with SC is an industry working committee to discuss and resolve particular issues. Examples include SC-180 CEH (wrote the DO-254 standard), SC-200 integrated modular avionics, SC-205 software for aeronautical use. See also WG.
SOI 1-4
Stage of Involvement, one of 4 required review points between a HW/SW vendor and certification authority during the DO-178B or DO-254 process.
System Safety Assessment, the process run at a system level to determine the safety criticality level or design assurance level (A-E) or a system. A preliminary system safety assessment is the PSSA.
Supplemental Type Certificate, a document issued by the Federal Aviation Administration approving a product (aircraft, engine, or propeller) modification.
Time Partitioning
using an operating system's scheduler to ensure that selected tasks and processes have access to the CPU for a specified amount of time within a specific period
Type Certificate. Granted by the FAA to certify an entire aircraft. See also STC.
Technical Standard Order, a minimum performance standard issued by the FAA for specified materials, parts, processes, and appliances used on civil aircraft
Unmanned Aircraft Standards, DO-304, guidance just produced by SC203 and being considered by FAA. Requires both DO-254 and DO-178B certification.
Validation and Verification
Working Group from EuroCAE, the EU equivalent of the US-based SC (special committees, oftentimes linked directly to these activities, examples wG72 is leading the effort on aeronautical systems security, WG-71 = SC-205

DO-254 Enabling Tools


Requirements Capture and Management

Conceptual Design

Detailed Design

Implementation/Production Transition

Verification and Validation