Maintenance Engineering

Written by Nicholas Kamuda
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Modern maintenance engineering practices often center on multi-disciplinary cooperation. Group organization and maintenance efforts are a central tenet in all processes that involve the use of an FMEA, or Failure Mode & Effects Analysis, such as RCM. RCM requires cooperation between management, executives, and the users of the assets in question to engineer unique maintenance programs for each asset involved.

The cooperative spirit involved in these maintenance engineering efforts dates back to a mid-1970s aviation industry study group that consisted of representatives from aircraft manufacturers, the FAA, and the airlines themselves. The group, called MSG (Maintenance Steering Group) set out to determine new strategies for maintenance. The reports from MSG1, MSG2, and MSG3 formed the roots of RCM style maintenance engineering.

Maintenance Engineering Using the Techniques of RCM

These days, engineering successful maintenance strategies for your company is a little easier. Many maintenance engineering companies exist to help you assess your needs, organize efficient response processes, and train those involved. By applying the ideas of RCM to your company, RCM review groups can have a startling effect on business and physical asset management. Assets will be better maintained, have lower probabilities of failure, and operators will be less likely to do things that may cause equipment failure.

RCM maintenance engineering accomplishes this by focusing on the desired function of the asset, and directing maintenance strategies at perpetuating that function, rather than the physical characteristics of the asset itself. If the function can be maintained, then there is less likelihood that other failures may occur. By identifying possible failures and the consequences of those failures, successful strategies can be designed and implemented to avoid those consequences.

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