MoD- Human Factors for Designers of Systems Part 3 Technical Guidance (Section 12 - Operations, Maintenance & Support)

Keywords designers of systems human factors maintenance operations support technical guidance

12.3.4 Reliability-Centred Maintenance

Reliability-Centred Maintenance (RCM) is the methodology the MoD employs to ensure that the consequences of system or structural failures are mitigated or eliminated as far as is practical and that the inherent reliability of equipment is cost effectively supported and sustained throughout its intended life. Applied early enough in the acquisition cycle, ideally during the design phase, RCM can influence development and maintain, in the most cost effective manner, assets such that they are capable of fulfilling their stated purpose when required.

The application of RCM involves a sequence of essential activities that shall be undertaken to develop, establish, implement and sustain a through-life maintenance programme. This sequence of activities is illustrated in Figure 12.1 and guidance on the completion of each element is contained in the appropriate sections of Def Stan 00-45.

The process begins by establishing the purpose of an asset and the conditions under which it is likely to be used - this is known as the Operating Context. All the functions required of the equipment are then identified as a measurable output, as well as the possible ways it can fail. The effects of failure are then considered in terms of how critical they are to safety, mission capability and the cost of repair. Based on the failure characteristics of the equipment and the subsequent consequences of failure, the RCM decision logic is used to determine whether an applicable and effective Preventive Maintenance (PM) action can be cost effectively undertaken to avoid or alleviate the consequences of failure. If a suitable PM task cannot be identified, then some form of change action or modification may be required and is compulsory if the consequences of failure impact on safety. The output from an RCM analysis is used to produce the necessary maintenance schedules.

Document identifier
DEF STAN 00-250
Date published
Document type
military standard
Defines standard
Replaced/Superseded by document(s)
Cancelled by
Amended by
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Part 3, Section 12 of this document provides information and technical guidance on Operations, Maintenance and Support and focuses on designing for maintainability within an operational context.
Hence, Section 12 of this document covers the following topics:
a) Operational Context.
b) Maintainability.
c) Designing for Maintainability, including safety, environment, layout and access considerations.
d) Checklist of Maintenance Design Factors.
Section 12 is concerned with providing data and guidance to optimise maintenance tasks and equipment. As the maintainer is also a user of the system, many of the design considerations covered in the other parts of this document are equally applicable to the maintainer. Section 12 covers some of the specific considerations that relate to maintenance and support that are not covered elsewhere, in order to increase awareness of the contribution Human Factors can make in the maintenance concept within the design requirements of a project.

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