(MSc in) Reliability, Availability, Maintainability and Safety
Product and system complexity is increasing. Many technical products and systems are combinations of software, electronics and mechanical components. Also, the interactions between technical systems and the economical / social systems of our global society are becoming tighter and more inter-dependent.
This further complicates the picture [see, e.g., Perrow (1999) ]. In order to attain the desired RAMS characteristics of a product or system, structured approaches are necessary to
- quantitatively predict RAMS product / system performance to decide whether the performance is as good as desired or not, and
- systematically identify and remove undesirable /untolerable RAMS characteristics.
Some industries, like the nuclear, space and oil/gas industries have already practiced this for several decades. But still, we see a need to continuously improve current approaches to increase their accuracy. Other industries are only awakening to the need for RAMS, for example, as they
- see that they have warranty costs that are as high as 10 - 12% of their gross sales, [see, e.g., Levin and Kalal (2003), p. xxii], or
- are facing devastating liability claims due to harm caused by their products, or
- realize the high costs of product recalls due to potentially harmful product characteristics (unless insured).
Customers are also getting more focused both on cost of ownership (where cost of failures and repairs are central) and safety characteristics of their products. In addition, safety requirements are imposed on products and systems through legislations and directives (e.g., the EU Machine and Toy Directives requiring a long range of products sold in EU to be CE-labelled).
Thus, both industry, customers and governments realize the need for RAMS, and there is a constant need for RAMS expertise in a wide range of industries and organizations. Finding a job after graduating has been easy for our students. Another advantage is that the RAMS Master Program provides a broad coverage of RAMS, but also, through the project work and the master thesis, allows the student to
- specialize in an area of her/his interest within RAMS, and
- choose whether she/he wants to specialize in RAMS challenges within a specific industry branch.
Access to industry related projects has been easy. If coming here as a student from abroad, you may carry out your master thesis in cooperation with industry or organizations in your home country.