Asset management is a critical field for effective maintenance of physical assets and equipment in a company. To be effective, it requires an understanding of how assets degrade and fail over time, and how this affects their reliability and availability. In this context, the Weibull distribution proves to be an important tool, as it allows maintenance managers to predict the probability of failures and take preventive measures to minimize downtime.

When did Weibull analysis come about?

Weibull Analysis was developed in 1937 by Swedish engineer and mathematician Ernst Hjalmar Waloddi Weibull. It consists of a probabilistic method that determines the average life span and failure rate over time. In the probabilistic and statistical field, it became known for the formulation of the Weibull distribution.

What are your benefits?

The Weibull distribution is one of the most used distributions in reliability analysis and asset management. It is a parametric distribution, which means that it is defined by a set of parameters that describe the shape of the failure curve. The Weibull failure curve is characterized by its “U” shape, also known as the bathtub curve, which represents the failure rate of the asset over time. It starts with a high failure rate, decreases over time, and eventually increases again when the asset begins to fail more frequently. In this case, for the vast majority of assets. For each type of asset, there is a more specific curve depending on its design conception.

One of the most significant benefits of the Weibull distribution is its ability to model the failure rate of assets at different stages of life. For example, an asset may fail more frequently at the beginning of its useful life due to manufacturing defects or installation problems. As the asset matures, the failure rate may decrease before increasing again as the asset ages.

By using the Weibull distribution to model the failure rate of assets, maintenance managers and engineers can predict when an asset is most likely to fail and take preventive measures to minimize downtime. For example, a maintenance manager can use the Weibull failure curve to predict the time when an asset will reach its highest failure rate and schedule preventive maintenance before a catastrophic failure occurs.

The Weibull distribution can also be used to calculate the probability of an asset failing during a specific period of time. This allows maintenance managers to calculate the asset’s reliability and determine the ideal frequency of preventive maintenance. For example, if an asset has a high probability of failure during a one-year period, a maintenance manager can schedule more frequent preventive maintenance to minimize the risk of failure.