Skip to main content
Till KTH:s startsida Till KTH:s startsida

FIL3200 Design of Fault-Tolerant Systems 7.5 credits

The aim of this course is to give students knowledge necessary to develop dependable systems. After completing the course, the students should be able to demonstrate the knowledge and skills required to implement and evaluate various fault-tolerant approaches. The course consists of 12 2-hour lectures and 6 1-hour exercises. The examination is based on 5 homework assignments, a midterm test, a final exam and a research project. The course will be given annually in the 4th period, jointly with the master-level course ID2218 Design of Fault-Tolerant Systems.

About course offering

For course offering

Spring 2024 Start 18 Mar 2024 programme students

Target group

No information inserted

Part of programme

No information inserted


P4 (7.5 hp)


18 Mar 2024
3 Jun 2024

Pace of study


Form of study

Normal Daytime

Language of instruction


Course location

KTH Kista

Number of places

Places are not limited

Planned modular schedule


For course offering

Spring 2024 Start 18 Mar 2024 programme students

Application code



For course offering

Spring 2024 Start 18 Mar 2024 programme students


No information inserted

Course coordinator

No information inserted


No information inserted
Headings with content from the Course syllabus FIL3200 (Spring 2019–) are denoted with an asterisk ( )

Content and learning outcomes

Course contents

The following is a tentative list of topics to be covered in the course: 

• Introduction 

   • Definition of fault tolerance 

   • Redundancy 

   • Applications of fault-tolerance 

• Fundamentals of dependability 

   • Attributes: reliability, availability, safety 

   • Impairments: faults, errors and failures 

   • Means: fault prevention, removal and forecasting 

• Dependability evaluation 

   • Common measures: failures rate, mean time to failure, mean time to repair, etc. 

   • Reliability block diagrams 

   • Markov processes 

• Hardware redundancy 

   • Redundancy schemes 

   • Evaluation and comparison 

   • Applications 

• Information redundancy 

   • Codes: linear, Hamming, cyclic, unordered, arithmetic, etc.  

   • Encoding and decoding techniques 

   • Applications 

• Time redundancy 

• Software fault tolerance 

   • Specific features 

   • Software fault tolerance techniques: N-version programming, recovery blocks, self-checking software, etc.

Intended learning outcomes

The aim of this course is to give doctoral students knowledge necessary to develop dependable systems.  As our society becomes more and more reliant on computer, software and embedded systems, dependability of these systems becomes a critical issue. In airplanes, chemical plants or heart pace-makers a system's failure can cost people's lives or environmental disaster. After completing the course, the students should be able to demonstrate the knowledge and skills required to implement and evaluate various fault-tolerant approaches. More specifically, upon completion, students will be able to:

• Describe the state-of-the-art fault-tolerant design techniques. Justify their targeted applications and limitations. Describe how the dependability is assured in an exemplary application.

• Describe dependability means, attributes and impairments. Apply the knowledge to select a suitable set of attributes for a specific application scenario.

• Analyze and critically access the tradeoff among system dependability, performance, and cost. Exemplify some of the trade-offs that are available to designers of electronic and embedded systems.

• Explain the need for different redundancy techniques. Justify pros and contras of different redundancy techniques and select a suitable one for a specific application.

• Apply the knowledge to design a small electronic or embedded system with enhanced dependability. Explain how the dependability is assured in the system.

Literature and preparations

Specific prerequisites

All accepted ICT doctoral program students are eligible for this course. Accepted doctoral students from other KTH schools are also eligible for this course. 

Recommended prerequisites

No information inserted




E. Dubrova, "Fault-Tolerant Design", Springer, 2013, ISBN 978-1-4614-2112-2 

Examination and completion

If the course is discontinued, students may request to be examined during the following two academic years.

Grading scale

P, F


  • EXA1 - Examination, 7.5 credits, grading scale: P, F

Based on recommendation from KTH’s coordinator for disabilities, the examiner will decide how to adapt an examination for students with documented disability.

The examiner may apply another examination format when re-examining individual students.

In the examination part, the following is included:

- five homework assignments (20%, grade pass/fail)

- a midterm exam (20%, grade pass/fail)

- a final exam (40%, grade pass/fail).

- a research project and its presentation (20%, grade pass/fail) 

Other requirements for final grade

To pass, all bullets listed in the examination should be completed.

Opportunity to complete the requirements via supplementary examination

No information inserted

Opportunity to raise an approved grade via renewed examination

No information inserted


Ethical approach

  • All members of a group are responsible for the group's work.
  • In any assessment, every student shall honestly disclose any help received and sources used.
  • In an oral assessment, every student shall be able to present and answer questions about the entire assignment and solution.

Further information

Course room in Canvas

Registered students find further information about the implementation of the course in the course room in Canvas. A link to the course room can be found under the tab Studies in the Personal menu at the start of the course.

Offered by

Main field of study

This course does not belong to any Main field of study.

Education cycle

Third cycle

Add-on studies

No information inserted

Postgraduate course

Postgraduate courses at EECS/Electronics and Embedded Systems