Microelectronics Reliability, Vol. 51, Issue 2, PP. 294-299, Feb 2011

Complex system maintainability verification with limited samples

Michael Pecht1 , QiangMiao2, Liu Liu2, YuanFeng3
1CALCE, Center for Advanced Life Cycle Engineering, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland 20740, USA
2School of Mechanical, Electronic and Industrial Engineering, University of Electronic Science and Technology of China, Chengdu, Sichuan 611731, China
3Institute of Aero-equipment, Beijing 100076, China


Complex system maintainability verification is always a challenging problem due to limited sample sizes. Consequently, conducting maintenance experiments in a laboratory environment is an appropriate way to obtain data for maintainability verification. In maintenance experiments, faults are seeded in the equipment and maintenance activities are implemented to record repair time. In this process, two problems arise when laboratory experimental data (in-lab data) are used together with field data during the operational test and evaluation stage. The first problem is the verification of segmental maintenance data and the second one is the combination of in-lab data and field data for integrative maintainability verification. Regarding the problems mentioned above, this paper proposes a suitable methodology to solve them. Firstly, the idea of segmentally weighted verification is adopted and the segmentally weighted verification (SWV) method is proposed to realize in-lab data verification. Secondly, the Dempster–Shafer (D–S) evidence theory based integrative verification method is presented to solve the problem of in-lab and field data combination. A case study concerning radar system maintainability verification is presented as an example of the implementation of complex system maintainability verification in industry.

This article is available online here and to CALCE Consortium Members for personal review.

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