Microelectronics Reliability, Vol. 47, No. 12, pp. 1889-1901, , Dec. 2007

A Maintenance Planning and Business Case Development Model for the Application of Prognostics and Health Management (PHM) to Electronic Systems

Peter A. Sandborn
Chris Wilkinson

Center for Advanced Life Cycle Engineering (CALCE)
Department of Mechanical Engineering
University of Maryland
College Park, MD 20742


This paper presents a model that enables the optimal interpretation of Prognostics and Health Management (PHM) results for electronic systems. In this context, optimal interpretation of PHM results means translating PHM information into maintenance policies and decisions that minimize life cycle costs, or maximize availability or some other utility function. The electronics PHM problem is characterized by imperfect and partial monitoring, and a random/overstress failure component must be considered in the decision process. Given that the forecasting ability of PHM is subject to uncertainties in the sensor data collected, the failure and damage accumulation models applied, the material dimensions and properties used in the models, the decision model in this paper addresses how PHM results can best be interpreted to provide value to the system maintainer. The result of this model is a methodology for determining an optimal safety margin and prognostic distance for various PHM approaches in single and multiple socket systems where the LRU’s in the various sockets that make up a system can incorporate different PHM approaches (or have no PHM structures at all).
The discrete event simulation model described in this paper provides the information needed to construct a business case showing the application-specific usefulness for various PHM approaches including health monitoring (HM) and life consumption monitoring (LCM) for electronic systems. An example business case analysis for a single-socket system is provided.

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