Center for Digital Agriculture

Cultivating Functional Safety Workshop

Hybrid Workshop • June 4–6, 2024 • iHotel and Illinois Conference Center

Workshop Overview

Join us in-person or online at “Cultivating Functional Safety,” a comprehensive workshop dedicated to mastering ISO 25119 compliance and preparing for autonomy in agriculture. This engaging event spans three days of in-depth training, insightful discussions, and valuable networking opportunities.

Immerse yourself in three days of functional safety training, covering fundamental principles and best practices. Led by industry experts, these sessions provide a solid foundation for understanding functional safety in the context of agriculture. The third day is split into two tracks, with the first track focused on software including open-source software. The second track is focused on hardware including topics such as fault-tolerant hardware, and residual error rate. You will also get the chance to validate your knowledge with a quiz and with a certificate.

In addition, gain insights from researchers into the challenges of autonomy and safety in agriculture, explore effective risk assessment strategies tailored for agricultural environments, analyze trends in ag injuries in relation to safety standards, and delve into the critical aspects of cyber-physical safety as related to autonomous agriculture.

Workshop Venue

iHotel and Illinois Conference Center

Our workshop will be take place at the iHotel & Illinois Conference Center located at 1900 S 1st St, Champaign, IL 61820.

Where should I park?
The iHotel & Illinois Conference Center offers free onsite parking so you don’t need to worry about paying the meter or parking tickets.

Cost & Registration

Workshop Cost: $300

Register by Tuesday, May 28th to attend

Limited Student Discount

Hover over this box for more info

Discounted Rate: $75

Students actively enrolled in a college or university can take advantage of this discount. They will be given on a first-come, first-served basis until the limit is reached.

Discount applied at registration


Our three-day workshop includes large group training sessions, certification exams, open topics,  panel discussions, and more. Below is a breakdown of our workshop agenda, which is subject to change. Please check this page for the most up-to-date details on our workshop programming. All times are shown in CST.

The functional safety training covers safety concepts, general principles, and more. The training will be led by an expert team from Balanced Engineering LLC – meet your trainers: Rick Weires, Ernest Streicher, and Ashley Greer.

Portrait of Rick Weires

Rick Weires


Ernest Streicher

Staff System Engineer

Ashley Greer




Date: Tuesday, June 4 | Duration: 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

8:00 – 10:00 a.m.

Introductions • What is Functional Safety • ISO 25119 Overview

10:00 – 10:15 a.m.


10:15 a.m. – Noon

ISO 25119: General Principles for Design and Development • Concept Phase

Noon – 1:00 p.m.


1:00 – 3:00 p.m.

ISO 25119: Concept Phase (continued) • Hara Exercise • Safety Goals • Functional Safety Concepts (FSC)

3:00 – 3:15 p.m.


3:15 – 5:00 p.m.

ISO 25119: Series Development  Systems and Hardware


Date: Wednesday, June 5 | Duration: 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

8:00 – 10:00 a.m.

ISO 25119: Series Development – Software

10:00 – 10:15 a.m.


10:15 a.m. – Noon

ISO 25119: Production and Supporting Processes

Noon – 1:00 p.m.

Lunch + ISO 25119 Functional Safety Online Certification Exam

1:00 – 4:00 p.m

Risk Assessment Open Topics

A panel of ag experts will discuss important topics surrounding risk assessment and functional safety.

Why Safety is Important NOW

Review historical safety movements and how they inform our decisions today.

Applications of Existing Risk Assessment Techniques on Agricultural Autonomous Machinery

Learn about the Safety Engineer’s perspective on existing risk assessment tools and their potential use in autonomous systems safety.

Concepts and Applications of Generative Artificial Intelligence to Support Agricultural Safety and Health

Large Language Models (LLMs) have numerous applications for practicing educators, researchers, and engineers who focus on engineering and technical solutions and support that can reduce injury and health risks to agricultural producers and workers. This presentation summarizes several specific use cases of generative artificial intelligence in the work of agricultural safety and health including standards review.

Perception Contracts for Assuring Safety of Learning Enabled Systems

In this talk, we will try to convey the definition of perception contracts, a recently invented concept for reasoning about the safety of learning-enabled systems. These contracts can serve as specifications for testing learning-based components like vision-based lane detection systems and provide end-to-end guarantees of functional safety. 


Date: Thursday, June 6 | Duration: 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Breakout Session #1
ISO 25119: Software Track + Certification Exam
Breakout Session 1 Schedule
  • Introductions
  • ISO 25119 Software
  • Software Planning
  • Software Safety Requirements
  • SW Architecture
  • Software Design
  • Software Component Design
  • Component Testing
  • Integration and Test
  • Software Validation
  • Summary

Software Certification Exam

Breakout Session #2
ISO 25119: Hardware Track – Residual Error Rates & Fault Tolerant Hardware + Other Topics
Breakout Session 2 Schedule

Rick Weires will present ISO 25119 updates, including Residual Error Rate

Ernest Streicher will present Fault Tolerant Hardware, Redundancy around sensors, smart devices, and self-monitoring.

John Shutske will present on agricultural machinery injury types and statistics

Expert panel discussion

Functional Safety Certification Exam

3:00 – 4:00 p.m.

Private Q&A with an Expert

Meet in private with one of our featured expert speakers in an informal setting to ask questions.

  • Rick Weires
  • Ernest Streicher
  • Ashley Greer
  • John Shutske
  • Salah Issa

Lodging & Travel Information

Click on each tab below for more information on lodging options and getting around Champaign-Urbana.

For this workshop, we have a dedicated room block at the Hyatt Place Champaign-Urbana with a special rate of $135/night. To claim this special rate, you must book your room with the Hyatt by May 31, 2024. 

How to reserve your room at the Hyatt Place Champaign-Urbana:

  • 🖥️ Online: Use this special booking link to access the website. Click on the “Book” button at the top right corner of your screen. 
    • You will be routed to the booking page. The group code (G-CFSW) should be automatically inputed in the Corporate/Group Code field.
    • Input the dates and number of guests you would like to book the room for and click “Check Availability”
    • You will be routed to the available rooms. Select the ones that fit your needs and proceed with booking and payment.
  • ☎️ By Phone: call the hotel directly at 217.531.2800 and press option 0 (zero).
    • The hotel representative will ask for the Cultivating Functional Safety Block, which is G-CFSW.


Champaign-Urbana has many hotels/motels near the University of Illinois campus. Below is a list of potential alternative lodging accommodations.


Experience Champaign-Urbana, the official tourism destination marketing and management organization for Champaign County, offers assistance with planning your stay to ensure you can rest easy during your visit. Learn more >>

Champaign-Urbana is easy to get to and navigate. Conveniently situated off three major interstates, we’re nearly equidistant from Chicago, Indianapolis and St. Louis. Transportation options include:

Our award-winning mass transit district will help get you around, as will our rentable bikes and e-bikes or walk-in our connected districts! We also have taxi cab services and ride-sharing services available.