Knowledge Center
Knowledge Center


Standard to ensure proper operation of automotive situational awareness systems.


The ISO/PAS 21448 SOTIF (Safety Of The Intended Functionality) standard is designed to be applied to the situational awareness function of ADAS applications taking data flowing in from sensor networks.

There is some controversy over specification in the standard of how to recognize “unknown unknowns.” These are risks that are random, completely unexpected, but have to be dealt with anyway. ISO 21448 is “intended to be applied to intended functionality where proper situational awareness is critical to safety, and where that situational awareness is derived from complex sensors and processing algorithms,” according to the specification.

Even the concept of SOTIF isn’t relevant for most of the safety regulations contained in existing versions of FMVSS, however. SOTIF is relevant high in the operating-software stack of an automated vehicle that depends on large, complex SoCs that may be running several very complex software stack, each of which contains or depends on the non-deterministic response of the ML inference models making microsecond-by-microsecond decisions.


What Is SOTIF?