Compact reliability and maintenance modeling of complex repairable systems
Valenzuela Vega, Rene Cristian
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Maintenance models are critical for evaluation of the alternative maintenance policies for modern engineering systems. A poorly selected policy can result in excessive life-cycle costs as well as unnecessary risks for catastrophic failures of the system. Economic dependence refers to the difference between the cost of combining the maintenance of a number of components and the cost of performing the same maintenance actions individually. Maintenance that takes advantage of this difference is often called opportunistic. Large number of components and economic inter-dependence are two pervasive characteristics of modern engineering systems that make the modeling of their maintenance processes particularly challenging. Simulation is able to handle both of these characteristics computationally, but the complexity, especially from the model verification perspective, becomes overwhelming as the number of components increases. This research introduces a new procedure for maintenance models of multi-unit repairable systems with economic dependence among its components and under opportunistic maintenance policies. The procedure is based on the stochastic Petri net with aging tokens modeling framework and it makes use of a component-level model approach to overcome the state explosion of the model combined with a novel order-reduction scheme that effectively combines the impact of other components into a single distribution. The justification for the used scheme is provided, the accuracy is assessed, and applications for the systems of realistic complexity are considered.