Failure Mode and Effects Analysis

Topics: Failure mode and effects analysis, Reliability engineering, Failure Pages: 8 (2597 words) Published: February 7, 2012
Failure mode and effects analysis
A failure modes and effects analysis (FMEA) is a procedure in product development and operations management for analysis of potential failure modes within a system for classification by the severity and likelihood of the failures. A successful FMEA activity helps a team to identify potential failure modes based on past experience with similar products or processes, enabling the team to design those failures out of the system with the minimum of effort and resource expenditure, thereby reducing development time and costs. It is widely used in manufacturing industries in various phases of the product life cycle and is now increasingly finding use in the service industry. Failure modes are any errors or defects in a process, design, or item, especially those that affect the customer, and can be potential or actual. Effects analysis refers to studying the consequences of those failures. Basic terms

FMEA cycle.
The loss of an intended function of a device under stated conditions. Failure mode
The manner by which a failure is observed; it generally describes the way the failure occurs. Failure effect
Immediate consequences of a failure on operation, function or functionality, or status of some item Indenture levels
An identifier for item complexity. Complexity increases as levels are closer to one. Local effect
The failure effect as it applies to the item under analysis. Next higher level effect
The failure effect as it applies at the next higher indenture level. End effect
The failure effect at the highest indenture level or total system. Failure cause
Defects in design, process, quality, or part application, which are the underlying cause of the failure or which initiate a process which leads to failure. Severity
The consequences of a failure mode. Severity considers the worst potential consequence of a failure, determined by the degree of injury, property damage, or system damage that could ultimately occur. History

Procedures for conducting FMECA were described in US Armed Forces Military Procedures document MIL-P-1629[2] (1949; revised in 1980 as MIL-STD-1629A).[3] By the early 1960s, contractors for the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) were using variations of FMECA or FMEA under a variety of names.[4][5] NASA programs using FMEA variants included Apollo, Viking, Voyager, Magellan, Galileo, and Skylab.[6][7][8] The civil aviation industry was an early adopter of FMEA, with the Society for Automotive Engineers publishing ARP926 in 1967.[9] During the 1970's, use of FMEA and related techniques spread to other industries. In 1971 NASA prepared a report for the U.S. Geological Survey recommending the use of FMEA in assessment of offshore petroleum exploration.[10] FMEA as application for HACCP on the Apollo Space Program moved into the food industry in general.[11] In the late 1970s the Ford Motor Company introduced FMEA to the automotive industry for safety and regulatory consideration after the Pinto affair. They applied the same approach to processes (PFMEA) to consider potential process induced failures prior to launching production. Although initially developed by the military, FMEA methodology is now extensively used in a variety of industries including semiconductor processing, food service, plastics, software, and healthcare.[12][13] It is integrated into the Automotive Industry Action Group's (AIAG) Advanced Product Quality Planning (APQP) process to provide risk mitigation, in both product and process development phases. Each potential cause must be considered for its effect on the product or process and, based on the risk, actions are determined and risks revisited after actions are complete. Toyota has taken this one step further with its Design Review Based on Failure Mode (DRBFM) approach. The method is now supported by the American Society for Quality which provides detailed guides on applying the method. Implementation

In FMEA,...
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