While the area of functional safety for industry has evolved over the years by developing well-renowned standards and methods proven in use, such standards are not present in the field of equipment protection for complex research facilities. Research facilities in particular do typically not apply global, systematic approaches for functional equipment protection, but rather rely on system expert judgment for the individual systems, often leaving out the emergent properties of complex systems of systems. With the increasing demands on research facilities to be highly reliable and available, comparable to industrial facilities, a holistic and systematic method for equipment protection is, if not necessary, highly beneficial. This paper describes the development of a risk management method named functional protection, and benchmarks its lifecycle steps toward the IEC 61508 functional safety standard as well as the ISO 31000 risk management standard. The functional protection method is currently applied for the design and construction of the European Spallation Source in Lund, Sweden.

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