A “Case” History in the Minuteman Reliability Program 640601

Aerospace reliability programs have encountered the problem of achieving required reliability without using a costly demonstration program. This paper describes the criteria and program developed to satisfy the reliability requirements for the USAF First Stage MINUTEMAN Motor Case. A comprehensive process surveillance and analysis program by Thiokol Chemical Corporation and the Allison Division of General Motors Corporation has provided high reliability of the large, costly cases in the MINUTEMAN program without preproduction demonstration at the allocated level of reliability for the part. This paper outlines the specifications that were used as criteria for the MINUTEMAN program along with the resulting implementation by Allison Division. Demonstration and observed reliability growth curves, in addition to missile and motor test results, supplied proof of the value of this approach.


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