Dependable Computing and

Fault Tolerance

The IEEE Technical Committee on Dependable Computing and Fault Tolerance
IFIP Working Group 10.4 on Dependable Computing and Fault Tolerance

Dependable Computing and Fault Tolerance News

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2015 Laprie Award Winners

The IFIP 10.4 working group on Dependable Computing created the award in honor of the late Jean-Claude Laprie in 2011. It recognizes outstanding papers that have significantly influenced the theory and/or practice of Dependable Computing. For 2015, the award committee has selected:

A. L. Hopkins, Jr., T.B. Smith, III, and J.H. Lala, "FTMP—A highly reliable fault-tolerant multiprocess for aircraft" , Proceedings of the IEEE, vol.66, no.10, pp.1221, 1239, Oct. 1978.


Albert Hopkins, Basil Smith and Jay Lala provided in their highly-cited paper, FTMP – A Highly Reliable Fault-Tolerant Multiprocessor for Aircraft, the major published account of a project sponsored by the NASA Langley Research Center in the late 1970s to develop safety-critical digital computing systems for commercial flight control. These flight-control systems had a reliability requirement of the order of 10-10 failures per hour for a 10-hr flight during which no airborne maintenance would be available. The ground-breaking FTMP project was highly successful and very influential, and established the scientific and engineering foundations of ultra-reliable digital computing for mission- and safety-critical applications for a wide range of industries. It showed the feasibility of hardware-based, high-performance practical implementation of algorithms to tolerate Byzantine faults, including clock-synchronization. The project’s work on verification and validation of ultra-high reliability requirements led to a hybrid analytical-empirical V&V approach, based on fault-injection and Markov modelling, an approach that is now considered an essential element of dependability assessment. Finally, the FTMP project laid the foundation for the fault containment concept, and advanced the area of fault diagnosis.