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Forum: Reliability & Maintainability Questions and Answers

Topic: Reliability & Maintainability Questions and Answers

Topic Posted by: Reliability & Maintainability Forum ( )
Organization: System Reliability Center
Date Posted: Mon Aug 31 12:47:36 US/Eastern 1998

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Posted by: Ben Walters ( )
Organization:Etec Systems, Inc.
Date posted: Wed Apr 21 15:01:12 US/Eastern 1999
Subject: Case Studies of Reliability Improvement
I am looking for any case studies or examples of large reliability improvement in a product. My executive management is asking about what it would take for a 10X improvement in our product lines. We make large, complex equipment for the semiconductor industry. Any case studies or examples would be greatly appreciated.


Subject: Reliability Improvement
Reply Posted by: Bruce Dudley ( )
Organization: Reliability Analysis Center
Date Posted: Tue Apr 27 14:43:11 US/Eastern 1999
Reliability improvement of ten times is an extremely difficult process and I could not find a case history in our files that were as explicitly defined. What I did discover is that there are only two ways to improve an existing or modified design. The first is to test, analyze and fix all the existing problems, then redesign the weak or critical areas and run another series of test, analyze and fix as many times as needed to reduce the failure rate and problems in the hardware. The second method is more drastic as it requires one to respecify all part requirements so that only high reliability parts with proven track records are procured. Then, retests of each incomming part must be performed to remove all defects. Critical items must be identified and design solutions to improve each situation installed. Robust design techniques that reduce temperature stress and electrical stress must to be considered. Finally, growth and qualification tests must be rigorously applied with corrective actions taken on each failure trend.


Subject: 10X Improvement
Reply Posted by: Jerry Cartwright ( )
Date Posted: Fri Apr 30 15:28:02 US/Eastern 1999
Ben, A success in improving reliability 10X was realized by following a process that involved in general: 1) Determine the current level of reliability. 2) Obtain the necessary data to identify potential areas for improvement (field data & failure analysis) 3) ID resources required. 4) Real time measurement/feedback of improvement results(test sites) 5) Track the improvements for verification 6) Recognition Simple, but data and resources are the key barriers for improvement. Regards, Jerry 507/286-6957

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