Home Top Innovative Companies to Watch 2023 A smart software company with focus on functional safety

A smart software company with focus on functional safety

Embedded Office, a trailblazer in functional safety software solutions, reveals its journey and vision for the future in an exclusive interview with BizTech Outlook. Founded by industry veterans Thomas Amann and Michael Hillmann, the company discusses its pioneering 'Flexible Safety RTOS,' AI integration plans, and the key role it plays in automotive applications.

A smart software company with focus on functional safety

What was the inception story of Embedded Office, and how did you strategically overcome initial challenges to steer the company successfully?

Embedded Office was founded by Thomas Amann and Michael Hillmann, who had a decade of experience working together in aviation, specifically in developing primary and secondary flight controls. During their time in the industry, they realized that only a select few companies were equipped to support safety-critical areas. In 2003, they decided to address this gap by establishing Embedded Office.

However, it soon became apparent that the need for functional safety software components extended beyond just aviation. Other industries with similar requirements began to take notice of Embedded Office and its innovative team. From the start, the team members and their expertise were valued as the company’s most invaluable asset.

To further enhance their offerings, Embedded Office formed a strategic partnership with Micrium Inc., an RTOS manufacturer based in the USA. This collaboration allowed Embedded Office to introduce pre-certified RTOS kernels in safety-critical systems, revolutionizing the industry. In recognition of its flexible capabilities, the pre-certified RTOS solution received the South Germany Innovation Award in 2013.

Today, this pre-certified RTOS kernel solution is known as the “Flexible Safety RTOS” and is widely used across multiple safety-critical markets, including aviation, industrial automation, automotive, railway, and medical sectors. Embedded Office has established a strong presence in thousands of safety-critical systems worldwide, providing additional normative services for functional safety assurance.

Embedded Office operates in the software industry. How do you perceive the influence of AI across various sectors, and how is your company planning to leverage this technology?

Embedded Office recognizes the significant impact that artificial intelligence (AI) is having across various sectors. From healthcare to manufacturing, AI has the potential to transform industries by automating processes, making better data-driven decisions, and improving overall efficiency and productivity.

As a company operating in the software industry, Embedded Office acknowledges the vast opportunities brought by AI. Our team is actively exploring ways to integrate AI technologies into our existing products and services, aiming to enhance their capabilities and provide more advanced solutions to our customers.

One area where we envision leveraging AI is in the development of intelligent and adaptive systems that can analyze and interpret complex data in real-time. By incorporating AI algorithms into our software components, we aim to create more robust systems capable of self-adjusting and optimizing performance based on changing conditions or user requirements.

Additionally, AI can play a crucial role in enhancing the functional safety aspects of our products. By leveraging AI-powered predictive analytics and machine learning techniques, we can improve fault detection, predict potential failures, and enhance the overall reliability and safety of our solutions.

Moreover, we recognize the need to stay updated with the latest advancements and trends in AI. Our team is actively involved in research and development activities to explore emerging AI technologies and their potential applications in safety-critical systems. We are also exploring collaborations and partnerships with AI-focused organizations to foster innovation and drive the adoption of AI in our industry.

Ultimately, our goal is to harness the power of AI to continuously improve our products and provide cutting-edge solutions that meet the evolving needs of our customers across various sectors. By embracing AI, we strive to maintain our position as a leader in the software industry and contribute to the advancement of AI-powered technologies in safety-critical markets.

Could you explain what Flexible Safety RTOS is and how it benefits your clients in ensuring safety and reliability?

Flexible Safety RTOS is a pre-certified Real-Time Operating System (RTOS) kernel solution developed by Embedded Office. It is designed to meet the specific requirements of safety-critical industries such as aviation, industrial automation, automotive, railway, and medical sectors.

The key benefit of Flexible Safety RTOS lies in its ability to provide a reliable foundation for safety-critical systems. By implementing Flexible Safety RTOS, clients can ensure the safety and reliability of their software applications in several ways:

  • Compliance with safety standards: Flexible Safety RTOS is pre-certified to comply with industry safety standards such as DO-178C (avionics), ISO 26262 (automotive), IEC 61508 (industrial), and EN 50128 (railway). This pre-certification significantly reduces the time and effort required for certification processes, enabling clients to accelerate time-to-market for their safety-critical systems.
  • Robustness and fault tolerance: Flexible Safety RTOS provides advanced features such as task prioritization, scheduling, and error handling, ensuring that critical tasks are executed in a timely manner and faults or errors are managed efficiently. This enhances the robustness and fault tolerance of the system, minimizing the risk of system failure or data corruption.
  • Deterministic real-time behavior: The RTOS kernel of Flexible Safety RTOS offers deterministic real-time behavior, guaranteeing that critical tasks are completed within specified time constraints. This is essential in safety-critical applications where precise timing is crucial for maintaining system integrity and responsiveness.
  • Safety-critical communication: Flexible Safety RTOS incorporates secure and reliable communication mechanisms that enable tasks to exchange data in a safe and efficient manner. This ensures that critical information is transmitted accurately, reducing the risk of communication errors or unauthorized access.
  • Normative services: Embedded Office also provides normative system services for functional safety assurance within the Flexible Safety RTOS. These system services include program flow monitoring, stack monitoring, and time budget monitoring, helping clients satisfy the mandatory safety measures and ensuring compliance with industry guidelines and standards.

In summary, Flexible Safety RTOS offers a comprehensive solution for developing safety-critical systems. Its pre-certified nature, robustness, determinism, and normative services make it an invaluable tool for clients in ensuring the safety, reliability, and compliance of their software applications in various industries.

What products and services does your company currently offer, and what are your future plans in terms of product and service expansion?

Currently, Embedded Office offers a range of products and services including the Flexible Safety RTOS, consulting services for functional safety projects, and solutions for safety-critical markets such as aviation, automotive, industrial automation, railway, and medical sectors.

In terms of future plans, Embedded Office aims to continue expanding its product and service offerings to meet the evolving needs of its clients. This includes exploring new technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) to enhance the capabilities of their existing solutions. Additionally, the company plans to focus on research and development activities to develop innovative software components that address emerging trends in safety-critical systems. Ultimately, the goal is to ensure Embedded Office remains at the forefront of the industry by providing cutting-edge solutions and maintaining a strong emphasis on functional safety, reliability, and compliance.

Automotive RTOS is mentioned in your profile. Could you clarify its role and significance in automotive applications, and is it related to autopilot functions in vehicles?
Certainly! An Automotive RTOS (Real-Time Operating System) plays a crucial role in automotive applications by providing a reliable and deterministic platform for managing software tasks in vehicles. It is a specialized operating system designed to meet the unique requirements of the automotive industry.

In automotive applications, an RTOS ensures the real-time execution of critical software functions within specific time constraints. This includes tasks related to safety-critical systems, advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS), infotainment, connectivity, and more.

While an Automotive RTOS can contribute to the overall functionality of autonomous vehicles, it is not directly responsible for implementing autopilot functions. Autopilot functions typically fall under the purview of higher-level software systems and algorithms specifically designed for autonomous driving, such as perception, decision-making, and control systems.

However, an Automotive RTOS forms a fundamental layer in the software architecture of autonomous vehicles. It provides a reliable foundation that other software components can build upon, ensuring precise timing, resource allocation, and seamless integration of various software modules.

The significance of an Automotive RTOS lies in its ability to ensure the safe and reliable operation of critical systems in vehicles. It helps manage complex software tasks, guaranteeing real-time responses, and supporting efficient communication between different software components.

Furthermore, an Automotive RTOS meets the strict safety standards and certification requirements set by the automotive industry, such as ISO 26262. This ensures that the software systems operating in vehicles are robust, reliable, and capable of providing the necessary level of safety and performance.

In summary, an Automotive RTOS plays a vital role in automotive applications by providing a reliable, real-time execution environment for managing software tasks. While it is not directly related to autopilot functions, it forms a critical part of the software architecture in autonomous vehicles, ensuring the overall safety and performance of the vehicle’s software systems.

Could you share more about your journey in becoming one of the “Top Innovative Companies to Watch in 2023,” highlighting the visionary leadership and teamwork that drives your company’s success?

Embedded Office has consistently achieved success through its visionary leadership and strong teamwork. Under the guidance of Thomas Amann and Michael Hillmann, the founders of the company, Embedded Office has fostered a culture of innovation, excellence, and collaboration.

Visionary leadership is evident in their ability to identify the need for functional safety software components beyond the aviation industry and create Embedded Office to fill this gap. Their understanding of industry requirements and foresight in recognizing the potential for RTOS kernels in safety-critical systems demonstrates their visionary approach.

The success of Embedded Office is also attributed to the dedication and expertise of its team members. The highly motivated team, with its innovative spirit, collectively drives the company’s achievements. Their deep industry knowledge and technical proficiency enable the development of cutting-edge solutions that address the unique demands of safety-critical markets.

Teamwork is a core value at Embedded Office. The collaborative nature of the team fuels creativity, problem-solving, and seamless coordination. By working together, sharing ideas, and leveraging each other’s strengths, they develop comprehensive solutions that meet the evolving needs of their clients.

In summary, the visionary leadership of Thomas Amann and Michael Hillmann, combined with the dedication and collaborative spirit of the team, has been instrumental in driving the success of Embedded Office. Their ability to anticipate industry trends, foster innovation, and work cohesively lays the foundation for the company’s achievements in providing advanced solutions for safety-critical markets.

 “Embedded Office has established a strong presence in thousands of safety-critical systems worldwide”
“As a company operating in the software industry, Embedded Office acknowledges the vast opportunities brought by AI”


 Company Name : Embedded Office

 Website : www.embedded-office.com

 Management Team

 Thomas Amann – Managing Directors
 Michael Hillmann – Managing Directors

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