CFSE / CFSP Specialties

Process Safety Applications


The Process Safety Applications specialty applies to personnel involved in the implementation of safety-related systems in Process Applications.

This exam is for the process industry safety engineers, i.e., Risk Analyst, Process Safety Coordinator, and Control Systems Design Engineer.

The CFSE Advisory Board highly recommends that you set aside at least 40-50 self-study hours for preparation of the exam.

Recommended Standards:

  • IEC61511
  • IEC61508

Recommended Course:

Recommended Books:

Sample exam:

The CFSE Advisory Board, in conjunction with industry experts, determines curricula based on the competencies required by international standards and industry best practice. As industries evolve through the application of improved or different technology, the board reserves the right to revise curricula to reflect these changes.
It is important to note that questions related to Configuration Management, Functional Safety Management and Safety Architecture are other topics that may be asked. These are all areas that must be understood by both hardware and software engineers to avoid safety design errors. Engineers should have a good understanding of diagnostic techniques that often require a combination of hardware and software.
The curriculum for this program consists of general (but not limited to) knowledge plus the knowledge in the applicable field of expertise:

  • General requirements of IEC61508 and IEC61511
  • Other relevant national and international standards (US EPA RMP and US OSHA PSM)
  • Common terms and definitions, i.e.
    • Safety, availability, and reliability relationships
  • Safety Lifecycle concepts and objectives
  • Requirements for Management of Functional Safety
  • General documentation requirements, i.e.
      • Change control requirements
      • Approval requirements, independence of approval
  • Hazard identification, analysis and risk assessment concepts and procedures
    • ALARP and tolerable risk
    • Identifying safety functions
  • Consequence analysis concepts
  • Likelihood analysis concepts
  • Safety Integrity Level (SIL) Target Selection
  • SIL selection concepts and procedures
    • Layer of Protection Analysis
  • Safety Requirements Specification requirements
  • Operations requirements
  • Typical failure modes of equipment used in SIS
  • Wear out mechanisms of equipment used in SIS
  • SIF verification and detailed design
  • SIL verification concepts and procedures
    • Understanding of different calculation methods and limitations
    • Understanding of failure rate data and limitations
    • Understanding of periodic test procedures and effectiveness
  • General design concepts and procedures
  • Detailed design concepts and procedures
  • Installation requirements
  • Safety validation concepts and procedures                    
  • Management of change concepts and procedures                    
  • De-commissioning concepts and procedures                    
  • Failure Rate Data
    • Low Demand Techniques
    • High Demand Techniques

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