Browse Publications Technical Papers 2011-01-0725

A Simulation and Optimization Methodology for Reliability of Vehicle Fleets 2011-01-0725

Understanding reliability is critical in design, maintenance and durability analysis of engineering systems. A reliability simulation methodology is presented in this paper for vehicle fleets using limited data. The method can be used to estimate the reliability of non-repairable as well as repairable systems. It can optimally allocate, based on a target system reliability, individual component reliabilities using a multi-objective optimization algorithm. The algorithm establishes a Pareto front that can be used for optimal tradeoff between reliability and the associated cost. The method uses Monte Carlo simulation to estimate the system failure rate and reliability as a function of time. The probability density functions (PDF) of the time between failures for all components of the system are estimated using either limited data or a user-supplied MTBF (mean time between failures) and its coefficient of variation. The reliability-cost tradeoff analysis utilizes a user-supplied relationship between reliability and cost for each component. The tradeoff can be used to optimally determine the reliability of each component in order to maximize the system reliability and simultaneously, minimize the acquisition and repair cost for the system. A detailed example highlights the methodology and demonstrates its main features.


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