Discover DO-178C Guidance

Information, best practices and useful downloads to help guide you through the DO-178C software development process.

DO-178C Guidance

Choosing a testing tool

DO-178C guidance is designed to ensure that clear best practices are defined and followed by avionics system developers. DO-178C guidance also prescribes specific software testing measures that are dependent on the criticality of the system in question.

There are a wide range of embedded testing tools available to safety-critical software developers that make expensive software testing significantly more efficient and cost-effective. This whitepaper describes 5 key factors that should be taken into consideration when making the important decision on which embedded testing tool to use for your project.

DO-178C Handbook

Adhering to DO-178C guidance, both in terms of development methodologies and testing requirements can be complicated and lots of potential pitfalls exist along the path.

'Efficient Verification Through the DO-178C Life Cycle' is a 70-page handbook (delivered by Rapita Systems and ConsuNova Inc.) that delivers valuable insights that will help both DO-178C beginners and experts to improve efficiency and reduce cost. Whatever your knowledge level, this guide could help you to improve your complete understanding of the DO-178C process, from planning to certification submission.

Design Assurance Levels (DAL)

DAL levels were originally introduced in DO-178B and continue to be used in DO-178C. Design Assurance Level categorization determines the amount of rigor required by the design assurance process. DAL categorization is determined by the impact that the specific system's failure could have in terms of Aircraft Safety. The more critical the DAL, the more activities and objectives are required.


Condition: Catastrophic Failure rate: ≤ 1x10-9 Objectives: 71


Condition: Hazardous Failure rate: ≤ 1x10-7 Objectives: 69


Condition: Major Failure rate: ≤ 1x10-5 Objectives: 62


Condition: Minor Failure rate: 1x10-5 Objectives: 26

*The final DAL is DAL E, which confers no failure rate condition or objectives.