ESI5236 Reliability Engineering

Hui Yang




Paul A. Tobias and David C. Trindade, Applied Reliability, 2nd edition, 1994, CRC press

Elsayed A. Elsayed, Reliability Engineering, 2nd edition, 2012, Wiley


Course Descriptions:

Reliability Engineering is concerned with the design, implementation, and prediction of the life profile of a system or component using a disciplined analysis approach that has strong roots in statistics, mathematics and engineering. Given a system, subsystem or component, one of the major challenges is to understand the inherent failure mechanisms that govern the system behavior as well as the development of the appropriate analytical scheme to determine system or component life profile.  The problem becomes even daunting due to aging and related transient phenomenon as well as the lack of meaningful data.  In addition the related challenge of maintenance intervention which has the ultimate goal of prolonging system/component life or enhancing performance of repairable systems. There is also the issue of reliability growth which speaks to system or component reliability improvement.


Today, those challenges still persist especially as companies strive to shorten time to market in order to gain market share. Equally important the issue of system safety in the larger context of design for survivability and performability continues to be of concern to designers and engineers.  In this course, we will examine analytical approaches for estimating reliability for components and for system of components. We will also explore some of the important metrics used to assess reliability performance for commercial versus military applications, and for repairable versus non-repairable systems. The idea of formulating the reliability function without necessarily assuming a known underlying probability structure is without question a key element in reliability assessment and so it is important to develop the analytical scheme in order to address this important issue.


Major Topics:


Introduction to Reliability Engineering and Basic Statistics


Reliability Concepts and Statistical Analysis Software


Reliability Measures and Relationships, Censored and Multi-censored Data


Exponential Distribution, Goodness of Fit, & Confidence Bounds


Weibull Distribution & Parameter Estimation


Normal and Lognormal Distributions, Central limit Theorem

  Reliability Data Plotting, Linear Regression and Least Squares Estimation
  Probability Plotting of Exponential, Weibull, Normal, Lognormal Distributions
  Physical Acceleration Models & Acceleration Testing Theory
  System Models and Reliability Algorithms


Grading Policy


1 Mid-term Exam – 30%
Homework – 20%
1 Project – 20%
1 Final Exam – 30%
There will be one mid-term exam, one final exam, numerous homework sets and one project. Exam dates will be announced as the course progresses. Final grade will be determined based on the student performance in different evaluation elements – as shown above. No make-up exams unless previous arrangements have been made. Students will be expected to attend class and prepare assignments. Habitual failure to do so will result in a reduced grade. An incomplete grade will only be given when a student misses a portion of the semester because of illness or accident. Cheating on examinations, plagiarism and other forms of academic dishonesty are serious offenses and may subject the student to penalties ranging from failing grades to dismissal.
Grading scale will be used: A: 90+; B: 80+; C: 70+; D: 60+, F: <60 (College of Engineering Rule: Only grades of C or better will be accepted in all Math, Science, and Engineering courses).




MATLAB® will be used for some homework assignments in this class. It is available in College of Engineering computer laboratories, or obtain the student version for use at home.


Matlab Tutorial