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Subject: Statistics

Reliability Analysis
Reliability analysis is an important component of engineering work that draws on the areas of probability and statistics. As the name suggests, reliability analysis is concerned with the investigation of the failure rates of components and systems, which are typically represented as probabilities. Life testing is a general term used to describe the experimentation and statistical analysis performed to investigate failure rates. Probability distributions that are used to model failure times are typically the exponential distribution, the gamma distribution, the Weibull distribution, and the lognormal distribution. Statistical analysis can be employed to make inferences on the failure rates under these distributional assumptions or to make general inferences on the distribution of failure times without any modeling assumptions. Data sets of failure times often contain censored data observations where the exact failure time is known only to lie within a certain region and is not known exactly. The product limit estimator allows the estimation of the failure time distribution when some of the data observations are censored in this way. The reliability of a component, which can be denoted by r, can in general be thought of as the probability that it performs a certain task. The complement of this probability is therefore the probability that the component fails to perform the required task, or the probability that the component “fails.” probability distributions are employed to model how these reliabilities vary with time. A complex system may consist of a large number of components each with its own reliability value. A system reliability diagram can be used to show how the failure of the various components affects the overall status of the system. The overall system operates successfully only if it is possible to progress from one side of the diagram to the other side by passing only through components that have not failed. If this is not possible, then the system has failed. If the reliabilities of the individual components are known, then the question of interest is what the overall reliability of the system is or, in other words, what is the probability that the system operates successfully? This question is typically answered by assuming that the failures of the components are independent of each other and by then applying the basic rules of probability

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Subject: Statistics
theory. These probability rules can be used to calculate the reliabilities of systems consisting of components in series and in parallel, and the reliabilities of more complex systems can be calculated by decomposing them into an appropriate collection of modules. The overall reliability of a complex system of components can be calculated by decomposing the system into a series of modules. Each module should consist of a fairly simple system of components in series or in parallel. The reliabilities of each of the modules can then be calculated, and the overall system reliability is found by combining the module reliabilities in the appropriate manner.

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