Musings on reliability and maintenance topics

Short essays and thoughts (musings) on reliability and maintenance engineering topics. Let me know your reaction and thought, plus any questions.
ISSN 2329-0080

Why Do Tolerance Analysis

December 13, 2014
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Why Do tolerance Analysis? The short answer is, everything varies. The longer answer involves the agreement between what is possible and what is desired. If we could design a product and it could be replicated exactly, including every element of the product, we would not need tolerances. Any part would work with any assembly. We […]

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Reliable Products Accommodate Variability By Design

December 11, 2014
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Reliable Products Accommodate Variability By Design The better reliability performing systems start the design process with controlling variability. Variability of materials and processes involved thought the product lifecycle. Reliability performance occurs as a result of the decisions made thought the design process. When focused on understanding and minimizing variability, the design become robust and reliable.

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Improve Supplier Reliability

December 4, 2014

Consider the Impact Suppliers Have on Product Reliability Situation It’s Friday afternoon and the phone rings. It is another customer complaining about your product not working. This is the fifth call this afternoon. Something is wrong and you’re responsible to make it right. The natural failure analysis process starts across your team. Gather information, determine […]

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How to Enhance Reliability Goal Importance

November 20, 2014
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How to connect reliability goals to business objectives Reliability goals provide you and your team a focus for the reliability program. They provide a measurable way to design, test, and maintain systems that meet customer expectations. Goal of any kind in a business is relatively easy to set and publish. They are not easy to […]

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Reliability Engineering is More Than Tools

November 13, 2014
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Reliability Engineering is More Than Tools Reliability engineering is blend of disciplines from material science to asset management. We use problem solving, design, maintenance, and statistical tools on a regular basis, yet that is not the only thing we do. Having met a few engineers that define their role as a reliability engineer as conducting […]

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The True Importance of Reliability Block Diagrams

November 5, 2014
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The True Importance of Reliability Block Diagrams A reliability block diagram is a graphical and statistical representation of the reliability structure of a system. Graphical as an RBD is drawn with blocks for each element of a system and connecting lines representing the relationship between elements.

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Building your Google Resume for Reliability Engineering

September 30, 2014
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The Expanded Reliability Engineering Resume I’ve recently received a couple of notes from individuals looking at starting a career in reliability engineering. One is a student looking at a career path, another a working engineer with an interesting in reliability. Both asked how to land a position given no reliability engineering experience. Hum, I don’t […]

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When to do a reliability prediction

September 21, 2014
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How often does your team make reliability predictions? The easy answer is very often. Each time you want to know how long a product will operate. The accompanying question on how well the estimate will match actual performance makes the real answer more difficult. We regularly and intuitively do reliability predictions all the time. When […]

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When does an FMEA study make sense?

September 10, 2014
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When to do FMEA Failure modes and effect analysis is a tool to identify potential failures and prioritize based on severity, occurrence and detection. I like to describe FMEA as an organized brainstorm. You probably have some experience with FMEA. In some industries there is a high expectation or mandate to do an FMEA study. […]

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When to conduct HALT?

September 1, 2014
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When to do HALT HALT (highly accelerated life testing) is a method to reveal product weaknesses. Design prototypes experience step-stress application of relevant stresses until failures appear. The intent is to find design or process related weaknesses early in the design process thus providing time to economically address the issue. Using a build-test-fix approach does […]

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