The U.S. Navy placed reliability high on their list of priorities for the F404 engine. A tough set of reliability requirements were established, together with an incentive award program aimed at encouraging and rewarding reliability achievement.
The F404 reliability program was structured to support progress toward meeting the goals. It was aimed at early identification of potential problems, measurement of progress, and ensuring rapid corrective action where needed. The program included early and detailed analysis with feedback into the design process. Trade studies considered total life cycle cost impact and were aimed at selection of cost effective design alternatives. Progress was measured frequently against tracking curves which were established for critical components and subsystems as well as for the overall engine.
F404 engine reliability has been demonstrated to be better than goal value at each major measurement point.