To read this content please select one of the options below:

Reliability test plan for a series system with variable failure rates

P.N. Bajeel (National Institute of Technology, Calicut, India)
Mahesh Kumar (National Institute of Technology, Calicut, India)

International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management

ISSN: 0265-671X

Article publication date: 5 June 2017




This paper considers a series system consisting of n different components having unknown and variable failure rates, where the lifetime of components follow exponential distribution having non-constant failure rates. Moreover, the failure rates are bounded by above and are dependent on environmental factors such as temperature, pressure, through linear relationship. The purpose of this paper is to design a component reliability test plan for such a series system with an unknown variable failure rate.


The reliability of the system is estimated with the help of the unbiased estimator of failure rate. The testing procedure is stopped when a fixed number of failures occur for each component.


An optimal reliability test plan is designed and the resultant non-linear integer optimization problem is formulated satisfying the constraints of producer’s and consumer’s risks. The obtained results are compared with the results available in the literature. Some examples are considered to illustrate the approach.


It is observed that use of prior information in the form of an upper bound and incorporation of environmental factors have the advantage of savings in the total testing cost.



Bajeel, P.N. and Kumar, M. (2017), "Reliability test plan for a series system with variable failure rates", International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, Vol. 34 No. 6, pp. 849-861.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited

Related articles