Reliability Ques (Tech Briefs)

We publish electronic versions of “Reliability Ques” periodically as a means of keeping our community up-to-date on effective tools, techniques, and approaches to improving the reliability, maintainability, and quality of products and systems.

Understanding Your Product Through Reliability Modeling

March 26th, 2004
A reliability model represents a clear picture of your product’s functional interdependencies providing a means to trade-off design alternatives and to identify areas for design improvement. The models are also helpful in:   Read More

How Much Reliability is Enough?

February 26th, 2004

Reliability is defined as performance of a function over time, whether it applies to a commercial product or a military system. Commercial product reliability is usually driven by such factors as warranty cost goals, competitive marketing strategies, and liability concerns while the military wants to meet the operational needs of users while also meeting support…  Read More

System Spares – What’s the “Right” Answer?

December 26th, 2002
Manufacturers are often faced with questions such as: How often will my system fail? How many spare parts should I stock? How confident am I that I will have enough spare parts?   Read More

Using Accelerated Life Testing to Assess Warranty Risk

October 26th, 2002
During a recent project, a question arose about the feasibility of providing a ten year warranty for a new system. The system consisted of a proven electronic assembly and 40 newly designed hybrid electronic modules. Warranty costs could be significant if reliability risks were not fully understood. The company producing the system   Read More

Which Variables Are Critical to Field Reliability? Design of Experiments (DOE) Can Help Optimize Your Design

August 26th, 2002
Engineers are often faced with the problem of optimizing a process that includes a number of input variables. It could be an analysis of a manufacturing process, or even an analysis of a business process. They’re often challenged to find ways to reduce   Read More

Which Design is More Reliable? Weibull Provides Answers!

June 26th, 2002

Weibull Analysis is often used to analyze field or test failure data to understand how items are failing and what specific underlying failure distribution is being followed by failures that occur. One of our staff engineers was recently responsible for making a vendor recommendation for a limited life item that had a specified 5% minimum…  Read More

How Complete is Your Reliability Tool Set?

April 26th, 2002

Whether you’re developing consumer electronics in a competitive market or ground-based radars for the Government, there are lots of tools to have in your arsenal to help make your designs reliable and maintainable. Using a broad definition of tools, your arsenal should include design rules and procedures, analysis methodologies, test approaches and strategies, and field…  Read More

Is Asset Management For You?

December 26th, 2001

What is Asset Management?
Asset Management is being called by many the “final frontier” of achieving major gains in operating effectiveness, corporate profitability and shareholder value. It has been reported that North American industry could recover $200M to $500M annually through improved physical Asset Management. To demonstrate the critical nature of managing assets the Department of…  Read More

Making Sense Out of the Reliability Prediction Business

August 1st, 2001
Reliability Predictions are commonly used in the development of products and systems to compare alternative design approaches and to assess progress toward reliability design goals. They’re often criticized as not being accurate forecasts of field reliability performance because they don’t usually account for all the factors   Read More