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If you work in the aviation industry, you’ve probably heard of reliability centered maintenance. You may also be familiar with RCM analysis. But if you never used it in your daily operations, you may wonder “What is RCM analysis”? We’ll answer that question and more below. Continue reading.
What Is RCM Analysis?
Reliability Centered Maintenance (RCM) analysis provides a formal technique for evaluating physical asset operations and future failures for aircrafts, manufacturing lines, etc. RCM puts an emphasis on maintaining system operations rather than conserving machinery.
RCM is used to create routine maintenance schedules that can have a reasonable degree of operability in an optimal and affordable way, with a permissible level of risk.
The Steps of Analyzing RCM
There are several steps to efficient reliability centered maintenance, which include:
There will be preliminary work required to plan for the RCM review, as with any project. Many essential up-front tasks include organizing an effective cross-functional department and ensuring that the ground rules are recognized and agreed upon by all members of the analysis team. It also involves collecting and updating applicable documents.
Choose Equipment to Analyze
Since RCM analysis involves a lot of time and energy, the company may want to spend analysis funds on selected pieces of equipment. On the basis of protection, and legal and economic factors, there are two selection questions that must be asked when choosing machinery. There are also criticality factors that should be considered, which include:
The selection questions process includes a series of yes/no questions created to determine whether a certain piece of machinery is recommended for RCM review. The MSG-3 guideline, for instance, includes four questions used to establish the first planned maintenance schedules for the aircraft industry. If a minimum of one of the questions is answered yes by the observer, then a thorough review is suggested for the equipment.
The model of criticality factors includes a series of factors created to measure the criticality of machinery in terms of protection, repair, procedures, effects on the environment, quality management, etc. Each factor is classified per a pre-defined scale where greater criticality is implied by higher rankings. The criticality rating of the apparatus can then be used as a rating or as a criterion.
Other processes may also be used, such as Pareto’s analysis of machinery based on rest time, inaccuracy, or other relevant metrics. Whatever approach is chosen, the objective is to concentrate RCM analysis resources on the machinery that will give the organization the maximum advantage in terms of safety, legal, functional, and economic priorities.
Identifying Potential Failures
One of the key tenets of the solution to reliability centered maintenance is that preservation operations should be concentrated on maintaining the functionality of machinery. Therefore, the initial step in the study of a single piece of equipment is to evaluate the functions it is supposed to perform. In feature specifications, several RCM sources suggest providing basic performance criteria, which can help to specifically define functional deficiencies.
Functional failures identify ways that can fail to execute the expected operations of the equipment. This can include the inability to execute a function, bad function output, over-performance of a mechanism, accidental function performance, and more. As described above, a reference to the functional failure definition can be given by the performance restrictions that have been defined for the feature.
Evaluate Failure Effects
The team members will help to categorize and select the right repair plan to resolve a possible failure by recognizing and assessing the consequences of failure. Many RCM sources include logic diagrams that are used to analyze the consequences of failure and categorize them.
This logic helps to distinguish between visible and hidden consequences. It also decides whether the problem has effects on safety, the environment, operations, or the economy.
Identify the Causes of Failure
At the actionable stage, the reason for failure is the basic cause of the technical failure. This decision is based on engineering judgment and depends on the expertise and ability of the staff in the RCM analytical process. A valuable illustration of the many levels of specificity that can be used to identify failure modes is provided in the SAE JA1012 document.
Choose Maintenance Tasks
The next step is to identify the effective maintenance plan for the machinery after you have defined the functions in which the machinery is supposed to operate. It also identifies the ways that it might perform poorly within those purposed functions.
Plus, it assesses the effects of those failures. The decision of the RCM research team regarding which method to use for each possible failure could be based on judgment, a pre-determined logic diagram, expense comparisons, or a mixture of factors.
Centered on the Failure Impact Categorization, some RCM recommendations involve task selection logic graphs. If safety is not a concern, another is to evaluate uniform cost values for the management solutions available. It chooses the work tasks that offer the least cost for the required degree of availability.
Once the effective maintenance schedule duties have been recognized, packaging them into a functional maintenance program is the last step. This includes selecting time intervals at which project teams can be the most efficient and effective.
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What Is RCM Analysis? An Essential Program
Hopefully, the information above answered your question of “What is RCM analysis”? If you want well-functioning operations, then it’s essential to run RCM analysis. When it comes to the aviation world, it’s essential that production runs smoothly at all times.
The only way to do that is to continuously check the functionality of operations. It’s never a wise idea to wait until machinery breaks down before the equipment is fixed.
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