They didn’t go overseas a few times to visit, communicate over email or get quotes, rather they went to dinner several times a month for five years before giving this CM a contract. The failure rate models of 217Plus have their roots in MIL-HDBK-217, but have enhancements to include the effects of operating profiles, cycling factors, and process grades on reliability. If it sounds too good to be true, it is. Because Guanxi is written about so little and remains a mystery to most, overlooking it is a leading source of failure for American startups. © 2020 Relyence Corporation All Rights Reserved. Startups that find themselves in the middle of these business deals should try to get out, or if you have enough cash, move yourself to China for the remainder of your build. We believe in always creating, always innovating, and always being the best. Yes, prototyping has gotten much simpler and cheaper in recent years, but rapid-prototyping has had little effect on manufacturing a new CE product at scale. In a reliability sense, components can be treated as fractions of the product and in most cases links in a chain. MTBF and the so called Failure Rate have a reciprocal relationship: MTBF = 1/Failure Rate, and Failure Rate = 1/ MTBF. It is up to the analyst to determine if any of this additional data is available and if it is helpful to include in the reliability prediction analysis. Mark, the operations manager for a company in British Columbia, Canada, that provides on-site computer repairs, maintenance, and consulting offered up the following reflections:“There are lots of variables affecting laptop and PC failure rates. What are the Primary Reliability Prediction Standards? Oftentimes you may not have a choice: there may be contractual requirements, or the model choice may be selected by a systems integrator, or it may be set by a reliability group. PDF | On Feb 22, 2018, Leonard MacLean and others published Failure Rates for Aging Aircraft | Find, read and cite all the research you need on ResearchGate In this case, you get coverage of almost all device types used in product design. We’ve included a list of the qualities you should look for in choosing one of these companies in Appendix TWO. This ability to perform design trade-off analysis with metric-based assessments empowers you to make the best decisions for your business. Early life calculations to help analyze failure rates during initial product introduction, or the early life phase, when infant mortality rates are a factor. Today, Telcordia is commonly used in the commercial sector. Reliability Prediction’s historical roots are in the military and defense sector, but over the years have been adapted and broadened for use in a wide range of industries. When there’s a guy standing next to you promising success in an ecosystem that is hard to quantify, it is natural to jump at an opportunity. The third way to manufacture reliably, and if you’re on a budget under $4M, is to choose a ‘manufacturing rep’. The Three Successful Models in Building an Electronic Device, The first way to manufacture a startup CE device at volume is to raise a great deal of money. As with MIL-HDBK-217, there is a Part Count reliability prediction intended for use in early design when all data parameters are not yet finalized, and provides a simpler approach to prediction calculations. While MTBF seems to be more intuitive, it is quite difficult to handle in calculations, because MTBF is not an additive metric. The factors in the equation are various operating, rated, temperature, and environmental conditions of the device in the system. The Telcordia standard has also been through several updates and revisions, which are designated by the Issue Number. They don’t cover the cost of shipping and they aren’t interested in trading equity for logistics work. Listen for clues that your rep is factory-direct. It is usually denoted by the Greek letter λ (lambda) and is often used in reliability engineering. The bulk of CE manufacturing is located in a different country, a country that doesn’t follow American norms of conducting business. For this above equation, the following list describes the variables: The equations, the variables, and the data parameters needed vary for all the different components modeled. - Any company that claims to NOT spend time or money on their Asian relationships. The variables used in the reliability calculation formulas to calculate component failure rates vary, but include data such as device ratings, temperatures, operating parameters, and environmental conditions. By adjusting your failure rates based on this real-world information, your predictions will more accurately reflect your product performance. Zone III, is termed the Wearout period and is characterized by an increasing failure rate as a result of equipment aging and deterioration. Once the device failure rates are evaluated, they are summed up to determine a base system failure rate. However, its use over the years has become widespread. They WILL make an introduction to a factory but often disappear after you’ve written your first check. This document, published by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), is an international standard with equivalents in all national regulations (ANSI/ASQC Z1.4, NF06-022, BS 6001, DIN 40080). Most electronic products contain many components. The full name of the standard is GJB/Z 299: Reliability Prediction Model for Electronic Equipment. The component or assembly failure rate obtained on field-based failures can then be used in your reliability prediction. Look for companies that guarantee to a 5% failure rate (that’s half the CE average) or to zero-failure if desired. Let’s start by accepting these truths about manufacturing CE: Manufacturing in volume requires the work of experts in several fields and cannot be learned in a short time by a single entrepreneur. The result of a reliability prediction analysis is the predicted failure rate or Mean Time Between Failures (MTBF) of a product or system, and of its subsystems, components, and parts. Work by Rebel has won several awards including ‘The Best of CES,’ ‘Best of Forbes,’ Red Dot Awards, and ‘Fetish’ appearances in Wired Magazine. An example equation from China’s GJB/z 299C, the latest version, for Bipolar Digital Circuits is: λp= πQ * [C1 * πT * πV + (C2 + C3) * πE] * πL, λp is the failure rate in failures/million hours (or failures/10e6 hours, or FPMH). If a startup performs poorly with a CM after a company has spent years building Guanxi, it reflects badly on the referring company and damages their hard-fought relationship. Manufacturing services are not advertised by Rebel, and are by referral only. The MIL-HDBK-217 Reliability Prediction Standard, China’s GJB/z 299 Reliability Prediction Standard. The latest versions of these databases, NPRD-2016 and EPRD-2014, can be used alongside the prediction standards and work well together. 217Plus can adjust failure rate estimates based on process grades. 217Plus also considers the operating profile of your system and provides results in units based on calendar hours – another differentiating factor. This way of work is called ‘Guanxi’ in China, which is literally translated as ‘relationship’ in English. How do I choose which Reliability Prediction method to use? Intelligent startup teams with manufacturing experience use this model to find a good ‘manufacturing rep’ who will partner the startup with the right CM in Asia. Reliability specialists often describe the lifetime of a population of products using a graphical representation called the bathtub curve. Or, you may review the standards to determine which one includes the environments and components best matching your design. Let’s further imagine that the prototype for this device was built for less than $500. The person you are looking for talks to, visits, or builds with their Asian partners on a weekly basis, for years. Sometimes this is built into the BOM, while other times it is a separate charge. Watch out for ‘factory Q/A’ only – this isn’t acceptable. However, some reliability prediction software packages enable you to use these types of adjustments across all models to allow for more flexibility. We believe that in the software world, and in the technology space, we must always be moving ahead. Often, organizations think that they will achieve better quality with AQL sampling plans t… But the math doesn’t work for volume. In a similar fashion to MIL-HDBK-217, there are two components of the China’s GJB/z 299 standard: the Part Stress section and the Parts Count section. How is an entrepreneur supposed to vet the manufacturing rep who says they can take a startup to China? This can be a deal-breaker for some entrepreneurs. AQL sampling plans are inefficient and can be very costly, especially when high levels of quality are needed. It is also time for our startup communities and investors to educate themselves, even peripherally, on the difficulties associated with manufacturing CE. However, you can use more than one model and analysts do this for complete coverage. Reliability Predictions offer a path to product improvement by supporting the ability to “design in” reliability. We LOVE our American manufacturing partners. This isn’t helpful to the industry or to the 120 entrepreneurs in attendance. Using the black-box steady state failure rates as a basis, the Telcordia standard includes additional methodologies for augmenting failure assessments by taking into account other data that may be available about the devices, units, or systems under analysis. - Any engineer or product manager touting that they’ve ‘worked with HP’ or ‘lived in Asia with the Fitbit team’ or ‘helped design Pebble’ or have other big-company experience. We call this the ‘Outsourcing Model.’ If you can raise four to six million dollars and are comfortable not learning the mysteries of manufacturing, this model is for you. The general rule of acceptable failure rate for new electronics is 10-15%. Models for components not found in MIL-HDBK-217, such as lithium batteries, hard disk drives, AC/DC power supplies, gyroscopes, and many more. Quality can not be inspected in after the fact. Calculating Failure Rates with Reliability Prediction Software, How to Perform Reliability Predictions Easily and Efficiently, How Your Reliability Tools Can Work Together to Achieve Maximum Results, An Overview of Reliability Analysis Tools and Techniques, Compute the upper confidence level of steady state failure rates, Integrate laboratory data from devices, units, or systems with or without burn-in data, Integrate field data from devices, units, or systems with or without burn-in data, Determine early life factors based on no burn-in, limited burn-in, or extensive burn-in. Look for companies that have prototyped at least a dozen products and have built in volume at least 3 times. The failure rate estimates from China’s GJB/z 299 tend to be very divergent from the other standards, especially for microelectronic devices. Most of the good manufacturing reps we know don’t get excited by electronics. In my experience, I have found that “consumer-grade” equipment, cheap, low-end systems, both desktop and laptop, have a significant failure rate. These relationships and their vast importance have an unintended consequence in the world of manufacturing electronics. This field-based failure data can be used in your reliability prediction analyses. All reliability predictions standards mentioned here are widely known and accepted. In some cases, 217Plus is viewed as a next generation of MIL-HDBK-217; however, there are substantial differences between the two models, as shown above, so the direct comparison is difficult. Manufacturing, like everything else, becomes much easier when there aren’t financial barriers holding you back. Of those that didn’t have limitations on time or money, the numbers are still depressing – only three percent of CE startups make it to the shelf, any shelf, with more than 20,000 units. Good reps also consider what they do as ‘work.’ They don’t think of manufacturing as a new, fun experience and don’t look forward to 22 hours on a plane. A good rep will advocate going to Asia less, not more. The best tools will even allow you to mix and match standards, provide built-in component libraries, and enable you to view how design changes impact reliability. We work with American CMs constantly for prototyping, tweaking the assembly process and building small runs. Inexperienced entrepreneurs often choose to go it alone. The full name of the Telcordia standard is Telcordia: Reliability Prediction Procedure for Electronic Equipment, Special Report SR-332. We attended one recent startup panel that had seven people on stage explaining how to manufacture Internet-of-Things (IoT) devices, yet not a single panelist had ever produced anything at volume and none of them had ever sold at major retail. Not understanding that BOMs are a commodity cost is a sign that the manufacturing rep doesn’t use Asian sourcing teams or simply doesn’t know what they are doing. There are no shortcuts for getting hundreds of thousands of components to a single assembly line in Shenzhen on a particular Tuesday in September, securing a safety compliance mark from a Federal Testing Lab, meeting New York state’s packaging requirements, or... well, you get the picture. The failure rate of a system usually depends on time, with the rate varying over the life cycle of the system. Note: We have great respect for Alibaba and have worked with HKTDC, but their referral services are not a good fit for those seeking manufacturing. China’s GJB/z 299 Reliability Prediction standard has its roots in MIL-HDBK-217 and has been developed to align with the procedures and devices found in China. The NPRD and EPRD databases include failure data on a wide range of electrical components and electromechanical parts and assemblies. If they’ve only sourced in China a few times, understand you are taking a risk. There are two main reasons: The most common response by the American entrepreneur when faced with this brick wall of knowledge and cultural differences is to say to him/herself, ‘how can I do this faster and easier?’ They push forward, blinders on, to find a ‘better way.’ While we applaud the American Spirit at work, there simply isn’t a ‘better way’ available, so those who stick to their guns will ultimately fail. He would like to handle 1000 concurrent users at 500ms. For smaller shops an Asian team is a waste of time and resources and is often a sign that they, the manufacturing reps themselves, are being taken advantage of. By factoring in this information, the 217Plus analysis will provide a more accurate predicted failure rate estimation. Along with the qualities you should look for in a good rep, we are also including some warning signs to be aware of when choosing partners (also good for the VC Model). MIL-HDBK-217 failure rate predictions are generally more pessimistic than Telcordia and 217Plus reliability predictions. So it is best to review the devices you use in your products to see what model to use. - Companies that insist that Mandarin or Cantonese are necessary for electronics manufacturing. Assessing the feasibility of a proposed design, Comparing design alternatives for the most reliable option, Identifying potential reliability areas of concern, Performing What-If? At this point, further analysis can be done at the system level if more data about the system is available, such as test or field data. However, this is variable and depends on the devices in your system. Failure data spans a variety of environments and quality levels, allowing you to select components that most accurately reflect your usage. Additionally, the πE, which factors in the environmental condition, is factored into the overall failure rate calculation. We love designing and manufacturing electronics, and it pains us to see the constant carnage in the startup manufacturing sector. We need to keep pace with all the new technological innovations, as well as new methodologies in industries. The Parts Count reliability prediction is useful in early design stages when the design is still in progress and not all operating parameters are known. Also, you can see what factors the models are taking into account and, therefore, which operating parameters will most impact the failure rate predictions. Below we’ve listed about 30 of the broad strokes needed to manufacture a simple CE device. Any company or person touting that they’ve ‘been to China a few times’ with one-off projects. We can do better. - Any company/person connected with the sales arm of a CM who isn’t completely upfront about that business relationship. Quality levels are also different between models. It was one of the first models developed, and many other reliability standards available today have their roots in MIL-HDBK-217. Relyence® is a registered trademark of Relyence Corporation. Universities forced to go Digital. Using reliability prediction software to calculate failure rates makes this process simpler and provides critical data for reliability requirements. Or, one of the reliability standards may be more commonly used in your industry. analyses to determine the effects of specific design modifications, Addressing product quality issues in early design before they become problematic, Decreasing the Cost of Poor Quality (COPQ), Meeting contractual compliance requirements. As a proxy for the latter, I have used the number of service calls recorded du… It is now used throughout a broad range of industries, including those related to military and defense applications. The downside to the Bootstrap Model is that most of the scams in manufacturing are perpetrated here. How To Use Failure Rate Predictions to Improve Reliability. Good manufacturing reps will advocate for particular CM’s, but should honest about what those CM’s can/can’t do well. When utilizing NPRD or EPRD databases, there is no equation to be evaluated, and, therefore, no data parameters to enter. There are very few mechanical or electrical engineers who take people to China successfully. I have two examples, both from TLC "LEDLite" home brand lights. Entrepreneurs have to be especially careful in choosing their partners to make sure they are not naïve or running a scam. The 15% is over 4 years for all consumer electronics, including junk PSUs that are almost guaranteed to pop, and also includes misuse or lack of maintenance. Promises are made for free container shipping, discounted BOM costs, free quality assurance, etc. MIL-HDBK-217F, Reliability Prediction of Electronic Equipment, is a military standard that provides failure rate data for many military electronic components. Why would a company refer a startup to their Asian partners when there is a good chance the startup may not pay a bill? Telcordia also includes the ability to adjust failure rate estimates based on laboratory test data and/or field data; MIL-HDBK-217 does not include this type of adjustment ability. Based on environment load impact failure mechanism, the present paper develops load-property interference failure rate model for electronic products. By factoring in this information, the 217Plus analysis will provide a more accurate predicted failure rate estimation. We have an issue currently with a vendor who has advised that their acceptable product failure rate is 14% (1.2% per month) and this seems really high so am wondering what the rest of the world is seeing. Our 2016 study, covering the San Francisco/Denver startup communities along with Kickstarter and Indiegogo, showed that no CE startups stayed within budget and delivered on-time for a retail test of their product. However, some reliability prediction software packages do not require you to enter all the data parameters and will use average default values, which enables you to perform a prediction with minimal input. Of the hundreds of startups that have chosen this path over the last few years, those that have succeeded with on-time and on-budget projects are, again, zero. It was originally developed and published for use by the Department of Defense. We hope this article helps you make great decisions about your partners and helps alleviate some of the complexities of manufacturing electronics. In summation, some of the unique features of Telcordia include: The 217Plus™ reliability prediction standard was developed by Quanterion Solutions. Then, as the product design becomes more solidified and data parameters are established, the Parts Count prediction is moved over to Part Stress, maintaining all the data already entered during the Parts Count assessment. You’ll have to sign-off on change-orders, but that’s OK; you are entitled to know the price of things before you start building. Modeled in the Prediction standards MTBF is not an additive metric the pitfalls associated manufacturing. 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