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Optimum modified ramp-stress ALT plan with competing causes of failure

Preeti Wanti Srivastava (Department of Operational Research, University of Delhi, New Delhi, India)
Tanu Gupta (Department of Operational Research, University of Delhi, New Delhi, India)

International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management

ISSN: 0265-671X

Article publication date: 2 May 2017

119

Abstract

Purpose

Accelerated life test is undertaken to induce early failure in high-reliability products likely to last for several years. Most of these products are exposed to several fatal risk factors and fail due to one of them. Examples include solar lighting device with two failure modes: capacitor failure, and controller failure. It is necessary to assess each risk factor in the presence of other risk factors as each one cannot be studied in isolation. The purpose of this paper is to explore formulation of optimum time-censored accelerated life test model under modified ramp-stress loading when different failure causes have independent exponential life distributions.

Design/methodology/approach

The modified ramp-stress uses one test chamber in place of the various chambers used in the normal ramp-stress accelerate life test thus saving experimental cost. The stress-life relationship is modeled by inverse power law, and for each failure cause, a cumulative exposure model is assumed. The method of maximum likelihood is used for estimating design parameters. The optimal plan consists in finding out relevant experimental variables, namely, stress rate and stress rate change point(s).

Findings

The optimal plan is devised using D-optimality criterion which consists in finding out optimal stress rate and optimal stress rate change point by maximizing logarithm of determinant of Fisher information matrix to the base 10. This criterion is motivated by the fact that the volume of joint confidence region of model parameters is inversely proportional to square root of determinant of Fisher information matrix. The results of sensitivity analysis show that the plan is robust to small deviations from the true values of baseline parameters.

Originality/value

The model formulated can help reliability engineers obtain reliability estimates quickly of high-reliability products that are likely to last for several years.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

There is no potential conflict of interest in the research. This research is supported by R&D grant received from University of Delhi, INDIA. The authors are grateful to the referees for their valuable comments.

Citation

Srivastava, P.W. and Gupta, T. (2017), "Optimum modified ramp-stress ALT plan with competing causes of failure", International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, Vol. 34 No. 5, pp. 733-746. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJQRM-07-2016-0112

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited

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