ARM Accelerates Time to Market for Safety Certified Applications

New kit simplifies compiler qualification when creating functionally safe systems 

Cambridge, UK – 2nd December 2013 – ARM® today announced the ARM Compiler Qualification Kit, a documentation package specifically designed to help developers achieve certification against safety standards such as IEC 61508 and ISO 26262. The kit provides evidence of the robustness and maturity of the ARM Compiler toolchain, saving months of effort for users who would otherwise have to create their own evidence for justifying their toolchain selection.

The ARM Compiler toolchain is already used in an extensive range of products that are certified against safety standards, covering Industrial Control, Automotive, Railway, and Medical applications. The ARM Compiler Qualification Kit can dramatically reduce the effort of certifying the software running on these types of products by providing usage guidelines for the safety-critical application developer and validation evidence demonstrating the appropriateness of the ARM Compiler toolchain for safety-related applications.

The Qualification Kit documentation can be used by the software developer, corporate safety manager, and the safety certification assessor as evidence that recommended best practices have been followed and that vendor developed test and defect reports have been analyzed with necessary mitigations put in place.

Users of toolchains that do not provide equivalent documentation face a longer, more expensive qualification process; either generating their own evidence,  or opting for third party certification, which typically lacks backing evidence or requires severe restrictions on toolchain functionality. With the approach taken by the ARM Compiler Qualification Kit, developers of ARM-based safety applications can take advantage of code generated with high levels of compiler optimization.

“ARM processors are fast becoming the de facto standard in safety-related applications and trusted hardware as well as proven software development tools are equally important,” said Reinhard Keil, director, MCU Tools, ARM. “The ARM Compiler Qualification Kit reduces validation efforts and simplifies certification of safety-critical systems with extensive reports and practical user guidelines that avoid degrading compiler optimizations.”

The ARM Compiler Qualification Kit consists of the following documents:

  • Safety Manual 
    The Safety Manual informs the customer how to configure the toolchain for safety-related projects, including recommended use cases and mitigation strategies for potential errors.

  • Defect Report

       The Defect Report contains a listing of known defects and workarounds, whether found via internal testing or  customer reported.

  • Test Report

      The Test Report provides C language conformance test results, demonstrating that the compiler generates correct output based on ISO c90 and c99 C language conformant input.

  • Development Process Document

       The Development Process document provides a description of the internal software development process used to produce the toolchain, including procedures for requirements and defect management, procedures for configuration management, traceability between source code commits and defects or requirements, and validation procedures. 

Once the toolchain has been qualified internally, long term maintenance is important to protect that investment. The optional ARM Compiler Extended Maintenance Program provides long-term maintenance releases to a fixed compiler branch for a minimum of five years, with longer terms available if needed.

The ARM Compiler Qualification Kit and Extended Support option are aligned with ARM Compiler 5.04, which is now available. ARM Compiler 5.04 will be available as part of Development Studio 5 (DS-5) in December 2013 and Keil MDK-ARM in January 2014. For more information about the ARM Compiler Qualification Kit and Extended Maintenance program, please visit

About ARM

ARM designs the technology that is at the heart of advanced digital products, from wireless, networking and consumer entertainment solutions to imaging, automotive, security and storage devices. ARM’s comprehensive product offering includes RISC microprocessors, graphics processors, video engines, enabling software, cell libraries, embedded memories, high-speed connectivity products, peripherals and development tools. Combined with comprehensive design services, training, support and maintenance, and the company’s broad Partner community, they provide a total system solution that offers a fast, reliable path to market for leading electronics companies.

The ARM Connected Community is the place that makes it easier for developers to find information for ARM-based designs, applications and projects. It is an interactive platform for all end users, media and partners of the ARM ecosystem. Join the conversation at


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