Reliability-centered maintenance (RCM) is a systematic methodology for preventing failures. This article begins by discussing the history of RCM and uses Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) all-industry standard JA1011 as its model to describe the key characteristics of an RCM process. It then expands on questions involved in RCM process, offering definitions when necessary. Next, the article describes the approach of RCM to failure modes and effects analysis (FMEA), the failure management policies available under RCM, and the criteria of RCM for deciding when a specific failure management policy is technically feasible. Then, after discussing the ways that RCM classifies failure effects in terms of consequences, it describes how RCM uses failure consequences to identify the best failure management policy for each failure mode. Next, the building blocks of RCM are put together to create a failure management program. The article ends with a discussion on some practical issues pertaining to RCM that lie outside the scope of SAE JA1011.
Dana Netherton, Reliability-Centered Maintenance, Analysis and Prevention of Component and Equipment Failures, Vol 11A, ASM Handbook, Edited By Brett A. Miller, Roch J. Shipley, Ronald J. Parrington, Daniel P. Dennies, ASM International, 2021, p 36–48, https://doi.org/10.31399/asm.hb.v11A.a0006817
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