ASQ - Electronics and Communications Division

Reliability Estimation for One-Shot Systems with Zero Component Test Failures

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Tests for one-shot systems such as missiles and rockets are very expensive. In order to design an efficient test plan to demonstrate the required reliability in the final system test, system reliability should be studied in advance. Before the final system tests, many subsystem level tests usually have already been conducted by customers and manufacturers. Therefore, the system reliability can be estimated using the information obtained from these tests before the final system test. Due to the highly reliable nature of one-shot systems, it is very unlikely to observe many failures, even at the subsystem level tests. To accurately estimate the system reliability with few failures or even without failures is very challenging. A lot of research has been done on how to estimate the system reliability and its confidence intervals from its subsystem test data. However, most of them require failures at the sub-level tests. When there are no failures, these methods do not work. In this paper, a flexible and practical method is designed to estimate the system reliability and its confidence bounds when there are few or no failures during the subsystem tests. This method can be applied to series, parallel and complex systems. The estimated system reliability information is then used to design an efficient test plan for the final system reliability demonstration test. A case study shows that the proposed method is very efficient and accurate when compared with existing methods and simulation results.

Keywords: RAMS 2010 Proceedings - One-shot Devices

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