Michael G. Pecht
Center for Advanced Life Cycle Engineering,
Department of Mechanical Engineering,
University of Maryland,
College Park, MD 20742, U.S.A.
Prognostics and systems health management (PHM) is an enabling discipline of technologies and methods with the potential of solving reliability problems that have been manifested due to complexities in design, manufacturing, environmental and operational use conditions, and maintenance. Over the past decade, research has been conducted in PHM of information and electronics-rich systems as a means to provide advance warnings of failure, enable forecasted maintenance, improve system qualification, extend system life, and diagnose intermittent failures that can lead to field failure returns exhibiting no-fault-found symptoms.
This paper presents an assessment of the state of practice in prognostics and health management of information and electronics-rich systems. While there are two general methods of performing PHM-model-based and data-driven methods--these methods by themselves have some key disadvantages. This paper presents a fusion prognostics approach, which combines or "fuses together" the model-based and data-driven approaches, to enable markedly better prognosis of remaining useful life. A case study of a printed circuit card assembly is given in order to illustrate the implementation of the fusion approach to prognostics.
Keywords: Data-driven prognostics, Fusion prognostics, Physics of failure, Model-based prognostics, Remaining useful life estimation, Electronics Reliability.
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