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Software Quality Assurance

In April 2011, DOE Order 414.1D, Quality Assurance, was issued to "ensure that Department of Energy (DOE), including National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), products and services meet or exceed customers' requirements and expectations." Attachment 4 of this Order covers safety software quality assurance requirements for nuclear facilities. DOE O 414.1D replaced DOE O 414.1C (issued in 2005). 

Safety Software Guidance associated with 10 CFR 830 Subpart A, Quality Assurance Requirements, and DOE O 414.1C is provided in DOE Guide 414.1-4, the Safety Software Guide. Work is underway to prepare an updated version of DOE G 414.1-4 that supports DOE O 414.1D.  This updated Guide is targeted for release in 2013.  

The DOE SQA Order and Guide are only applicable to those consequence assessment models that meet the definition of safety software.  Most consequence assessment models used by the DOE community applications do not fall into the safety software category and are best described as safety-related or non-safety software.   To provide SQA guidance for these codes, SCAPA has prepared its own guidance document that extends DOE’s graded approach to SQA for safety software to safety-related and non-safety consequence assessment models. This SCAPA SQA guidance document is entitled: Software Quality Assurance Guidance for Consequence Assessment Software Designed for Safety-Related and Other Non-Safety Applications.

The following links offer additional information on SQA:

DOE Definition of Safety Software

Definitions of Safety System Software, Safety and Hazard Analysis Software, and Safety Management and Administrative Controls Software.

Ten Safety SQA Work Activities

Listing of the ten software quality work activities that are to be performed using a graded approach.

Graded Approach to SQA

DOE G 414.1-4 provides a graded implementation strategy for the 10 software quality work activities. The graded approach identifies activities and sub-activities that can be implemented at varying levels of rigor based upon the potential impact on safety and the type of software type.

The DOE Safety Software Central Registry and Toolbox Codes

The Central Registry provides information about DOE toolbox codes. These codes are routinely used by DOE to perform calculations and develop data used to establish the safety basis for DOE facilities and operations, and to support the variety of safety analyses and safety evaluations developed for these facilities.

Why the SQA Order and Guide Were Developed

The history of activities leading up to the development of DOE's SQA Order and Guide.

The DOE/HSS Nuclear Safety Software Quality Assurance Webpage

Includes additional information on DOE’s SQA requirements, the Central Registry for toolbox codes, and related SQA work by DOE/HS.

SCAPA’s SQA Guidance for Consequence Models that are not Safety Software
The SCAPA guidance incorporates the key elements found in the DOE guidance for safety software but does so using an appropriately graded approach that is readily implementable by DOE’s emergency management community and its software suppliers.  This approach strikes an acceptable balance between the need for modeling complex environmental processes (e.g., atmospheric dispersion and deposition), timely innovation, and SQA for software products that are not classified as safety software.