ORP 5042 Section IU: Reliability, Availability and Maintainability


May 13 – July 26, 2024

Location: On-Line (Asynchronous)


Instructor: John B. Foulkes, Ph.D.

Email: jfoulkes@fit.edu; jfoulkes@comcast.net

Phone: 410-652-4158

Office Hours: By Appointment


Course Objectives

(1) Gain an understanding of the Reliability, Availability and Maintainability concepts relating to system effectiveness and in support of system design.

(2) Review basic mathematical concepts, design concepts and data analysis used in quantifying availability, maintainability and reliability as measures of operational readiness and system effectiveness.

(3) Apply reliability, availability and maintainability measures in support of decision making regarding real world problems.



Practical Reliability Engineering, 5th Edition, Patrick D.T. O’Connor; John Wiley & Sons, LTD, England, 2012.

---   Hard Cover version:  ISBN 13: 978-0-470-97982-2;

---   Paperback version: (much cheaper): ISBN 13: 978-0-470-97981-5.

The textbook can be purchased from the MBS Direct Web site located at mbsdirect.net or any e-tailer such as Amazon.

Materials – In addition to the textbook, the course requires each student to have access to a computer with Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint). We will be using Excel (Excel 2016 is best; but any version as far back as Excel 2010 will work). You must have a fully-capable version (not a “starter” version) of Excel to include the Data Analysis add-in.

Prerequisites – ORP 5041 or permission of instructor.

Grading - Course grade will be determined by weighted average of grades for class participation (10%), Homework (20%), and 2 examinations (mid-term and final, at 35% each) according to the following scale:

Percentage – Letter Grade

90 - 100 – A

80 - 89 – B

70 - 79 – C

60 - 69 – D

Below 60 – F

Assignment Submission and Grading Policy – Assignments will consist of homework problems, assigned each week, 2 exams, and weekly discussion exercises:

The grading of all assignments (homework, exams, discussions) will be completed no later than 48 hours after submission. Late submissions will be accepted ONLY if the instructor is contacted prior to the due date with a valid excuse.

Weekly Schedule


May 13

Chapter 1

Introduction to Reliability Engineering.  


May 20

Chapter 2

Reliability Mathematics.


May 27

Chapter 3

Life Data Analysis and Probability Plotting.



Jun 3

Chapters 4 & 5

Monte Carlo Simulation; Load-Strength Interference.


Jun 10

Chapter 6


Reliability Prediction and Modeling.


Jun 17

Mid-Term Exam


Chapters 1-6.


Jun 24

Chapter 7

Design for Reliability.


Jul 1

Chapter 8

Reliability of Mechanical Components and Systems.


Jul 8

Chapters 9 & 10

Electronic Systems Reliability; Software Reliability.


Jul 15

Chapters 11 & 12

Design of Experiments and Analysis of Variance; Reliability Testing.


Jul 22

Final Exam (due 11:59pm, July 26)

Chapters 7-12


Attendance Policy- As this is an on-line (asynchronous) course, formal attendance will not be taken. However weekly participation is expected in order that the student stay on pace with the material and assignments.


Additional Resources and Help. 

Access to online FIT resources such as email, Canvas, PAWS, and other tools is available as follows:

      Homepage  http://www.fit.edu/

      ACCESS (FIT email and Canvas)  https://access.fit.edu/

      PAWS  http://www.fit.edu/paws/ or http://t.fit.edu/ssb (from NMCI computer)


If there is any problem please contact the IT Help Desk at http://it.fit.edu/support/ 321-674-7284 or techsupport@fit.edu


In addition, questions, suggestions for additional help or references can also be directed to your instructor at jfoulkes@fit.edu.


Policies –

Academic Honesty Definitions and Procedures.


Title IX.

The university’s Title IX policy is available at https://www.fit.edu/policies/title-ix/

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 is a federal civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in federally funded education programs and activities. Florida Institute of Technology policy also prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex.

Florida Tech faculty are committed to helping create a safe learning environment for all students that is free from all forms of discrimination and sexual harassment, including sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking. If you, or someone you know, have experienced or is experiencing any of these behaviors, know that help and support are available.

Florida Tech strongly encourages all members of the community to take action, seek support, and report any incident of sexual harassment or gender discrimination to Fanak Baarmand, Title IX Coordinator at 321-674-8885 or fbaarman@fit.edu.

Please note that as your professor, I am required to report any incidents to the Title IX Coordinator.  If you wish to speak to an employee who does not have this reporting responsibility, please contact the Student Counseling Center at 321-674-8050.

Academic Accommodations.

Florida Tech is committed to equal opportunity for persons w/disabilities in the participation of activities operated/sponsored by the university. Therefore, students with documented disabilities are entitled to reasonable educational accommodations. The Office of Accessibility Resources (OAR) supports students by assisting w/accommodations, providing recommended interventions, and engaging in case management services. It is the student’s responsibility to make a request to OAR before any accommodations can be approved/implemented. Also, students w/approved accommodations are encouraged to speak with the course instructor to discuss any arrangements and/or concerns relating to their accommodations for the

class.  Office of Accessibility Resources (OAR): Telephone: 321-674-8285 /

Email: accessibilityresources@fit.edu

Website: https://www.fit.edu/accessibility-resources/

Course Recording Disclosure.

Portions of this course can be recorded and available to course participants. Students are subject to having their images and voices recorded during certain activities for the purpose of self-evaluation, peer-evaluation, presentations, assessments, and/or discussions. Course participants should have no expectation of privacy regarding their participation in classroom presentations, discussions, or peer activities. Recordings may not be reproduced, shared with those not registered in the course, or uploaded to other online environments. All recordings will be deleted at the conclusion of the academic term.


We are all bound by confidentiality in this class. Students may want to discuss their company or employer and its policies and procedures as applied to the class material.  Perhaps the student will want to provide a paper on a company confidential project.  In order to assure that we can have a free and open discussion, it is expected that each student will respect the confidentiality of any materials that classmates are willing to share.

Incomplete Grade.  An “I” is given for incomplete work that has occurred because of circumstances beyond the student’s control.  It indicates that the work of the student in the course is qualitatively satisfactory and that there is reasonable expectancy that completion of the remaining work would result in a passing grade.  The instructor will furnish the appropriate academic head with a statement of the work to be completed.  The student must complete the work at the earliest possible time but prior to the end of the sixth week of the following semester unless an earlier deadline is established at the time the “I” is recorded and the student is notified of this fact.  A waiver of the six-week limitation requires special written permission of the cognizant dean.  The “I” will automatically become an F at the beginning of the seventh week unless the work is completed or an approved waiver has been filed with the Office of the Registrar.

Withdrawal Policy.  The deadline to drop a course with a grad of W is at the end of the eighth week of classes.  Please consult the academic schedule for the exact date for your course.  Refer to the university’s Web site for the complete Drop/Withdrawal Policy.

Evans Library.  All FIT students and faculty have remote access to the John H. Evans Library at main campus, see http://lib.fit.edu/  To search the library’s research databases, enter your “TRACKS” account username and password.

Communication with the Instructor and Staff.  In general, please keep the instructor and staff aware if you are away for any extended period of time.