Chances are you have heard of Reliability, Availability, and Maintainability (RAM) separately. But, together, RAM is an important concept within engineering that can help design products with improved reliability and reduced maintenance costs. In this post, we will explain exactly what Reliability Availability Maintainability Analysis is and how you can use it.
What is Reliability Availability Maintainability Analysis?
Reliability availability maintainability analysis helps you strike a balance between asset productivity, purchase price, and maintenance cost. A system or asset’s design features include reliability, availability, and maintainability. For operators and maintenance specialists as well as system engineers, they are of utmost importance. By minimizing waste, maximizing profit, and optimizing the asset’s overall life cycle expenses, you can use these factors collectively to increase the productivity of the asset across its life cycle. Additionally, by adding the safety component to the already existing criteria, you can enhance your reliability availability maintainability analysis to become the RAMS analysis.
This is the probability that an asset will work faultlessly in a specific period under stringent guidelines. Metrics like mean time between failures (MTBF) for repairable goods and mean time to failure (MTTF) for non-repairable items are frequently used to determine reliability.
Reliability and maintainability parameters combine into one special parameter called availability. It measures the likelihood of an asset being in operable condition at a specific period. This means the asset must not be undergoing maintenance or repairs, and it doesn’t include startup time.
The term maintainability refers to the complexity and amount of resources necessary for maintenance. Additionally, you can define the likelihood of an asset reverting to its intended state once you finish a maintenance job using this term. Mean time to repair (MTTR) is a metric that you may use to measure maintainability.
Why is RAM Analysis Important?
You can use the procedure known as RAM analysis to examine reliability, availability, and maintainability all at once to draw meaningful and practical conclusions. The reason for this is that these factors both depend on and conflict with one another. So, if one metric is improved, it’s likely that the other two will get worse. Increased preventive maintenance, for instance, will reduce availability while increasing reliability.
How to Use RAM Analysis
Typically, a group of design, systems, and reliability engineers performs RAM analysis throughout the design phase. Engineers in maintenance and service reliability, who have access to important data on the performance and health of the asset, can, however, rerun the study at various periods over the asset’s existence.
After the design phase, RAM analysis might be useful for determining the asset’s present status. This is particularly helpful since conditions are rarely ideal for assets to function. Every asset has its own unique conditions, meaning they will fail at different rates. Because of this, the aim of extending RAM analysis during the operations phase is to take into consideration the impact of changing conditions and the corresponding failure rates. To put it another way, maintenance levels cannot remain constant from the time of equipment installation until its disposal. To account for the intended trade-off between reliability, maintainability, and availability, RAM analysis can help you decide what improvements to make.
Reliability Availability Maintainability Relies on Data
System engineers are now expected to create systems that not only operate but function optimally, minimizing operating and maintenance costs while maximizing overall benefits. This is due to the rising cost of materials, business competition, soaring inflation, and shortage of resources and labor. The best approach is one that optimizes the asset’s total life cycle cost by adjusting the asset’s maintenance requirements, as well as its renewal and replacement strategies. Having the appropriate data and contextualizing it properly is the only way to do that.