Yongquan Suna,b, Tieyuan Sunc, Michael G. Pechtb, and Chunyu Yua
a Institute of Sensor Reliability Engineering, Harbin University of Science and Technology, Harbin 150080, China
b CALCE, Center for Advanced Life Cycle Engineering, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland 20740, USA
c Shanghai Aircraft Custom Service Company Ltd., Shanghai 200240, China
Extracted reliability information is universal in practice and makes it difficult to estimate system
lifetime distributions and reliability. In order to address this problem, this paper develops a method to
compute lifetime distributions of serial, parallel, and serial/parallel systems using the failure probability
density functions of outsourced components, and then to compute system reliability and component importance
measures. Time-varying weights are introduced to simplify the lifetime distribution of a system with
multiple types of components and make the system lifetime distribution to be a sum of component probability
density functions. A case study illustrates the developed method by identifying the lifetime distribution of
a radio navigation system for large passenger aircraft. To demonstrate the effectiveness of the developed
method, the estimation results from the developed method are compared with the results from a computer
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