MIL-STD-1629 "Procedures for Performing a Failure Mode, Effects and Criticality Analysis"

The superseded but widely used reference for FMEA and FMECA

This standard covers Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (FMEA) and variants including Damage Modes and Effects Analysis (DMEA) and Failure Modes Effects and Criticality Analysis (FMECA).

Although this military standard was cancelled by MIL-STD-1629A change note 3 on 4th August 1998, it is still widely used as a reference when performing the variants of Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (FMEA).

The process defined for FMEA addresses:

  • planning;
  • worksheet formats;
  • ground rules and assumptions;
  • coding system;
  • contributing information;
  • indenture level (including hardware and functional approaches);
  • failure definition;
  • identification of failure modes, effects (local, higher and system level), detection methods, and corrective actions;
  • identification of corrective design; and
  • severity classification.


Although independence of a system safety program is still required, it may be able to combine efforts with the reliability, availability and maintainability (RAM) parts of many organisations.


MIL-STD-1629 is available through ASSIST.


The rather non-specific guidance given upon cancellation was that users "... may consult various national and international documents ...".