Chapter 2

Reliability Design Tools

Joseph A. Childs


The importance of designing reliability into a product was the focus of Chapter 1. As technology continues to advance, products continue to increase in complexity. Their ability to perform when needed and to last longer are becoming increasingly important. Similarly, it is becoming more and more critical to be able to predict failure occurrences for today's products more effectively and more thoroughly. This means that reliability engineers must be increasingly effective at understanding what is at stake, assessing reliability, and assuring that product reliability maturity is at the level required. To assure this effectiveness, tools have been developed in the reliability engineering discipline. This chapter is a summary of such tools that exist in all aspects of a product's life: from invention, design, production, and testing, to its use and end of life.

The automation of reliability methods into tools is important for the repeatability of the process and results, for value-added benefits in terms of cost savings during the application of design analysis methods, and for achieving desired results faster, improving design cycle times. As design processes evolve, the tools should evolve. Innovation in the current electrical and mechanical design tool suite should include interfacing to the current design reliability tool suite.

Reliability Tools in the Life Cycles of Products

One important thing about reliability ...

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