Optimal Periodic Inspection of A Stochastically Degrading System
AIR FORCE INST OF TECH WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB OH
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This thesis develops and analyzes a procedure to determine the optimal inspection interval that maximizes the limiting average availability of a stochastically degrading component operating in a randomly evolving environment. The component is inspected periodically, and if the total observed cumulative degradation exceeds a fixed threshold value, the component is instantly replaced with a new, statistically identical component. Degradation is due to a combination of continuous wear caused by the components random operating environment, as well as damage due to randomly occurring shocks of random magnitude. In order to compute an optimal inspection interval and corresponding limiting average availability, a nonlinear program is formulated and solved using a direct search algorithm in conjunction with numerical Laplace transform inversion. Techniques are developed to significantly decrease the time required to compute the approximate optimal solutions. The mathematical programming formulation and solution techniques are illustrated through a series of increasingly complex example problems.
- Theoretical Mathematics
- Statistics and Probability
- Operations Research