More Simulation Analyses
Reliability Phase Diagrams and Maintenance Phases
You can use Reliability Phase Diagrams (RPDs) to model systems that go through different phases during the course of their operation. For example, some aircraft components (such as landing gear) operate only during the take-off and landing phases of a mission, while others (such as engines) may experience a higher failure rate during these phases due to higher stress. To model these types of situations in BlockSim, you can simply create separate RBDs to describe the system’s operation during each distinct phase and then use a phase diagram to describe how the system proceeds through the phases over time.
In addition, the software uses Maintenance Phases to model scenarios in which a system goes directly to maintenance under specified conditions. For example, if a failure during the taxi phase sends an aircraft in for maintenance, it will start over from the beginning of the mission once repaired — not from the middle of the taxi phase where it was when the failure occurred, as other RBD analyses have been forced to assume. This flexibility provides a tremendous leap forward in the ability to simulate system operation more realistically.
Now we have added success/failure paths, for situations where a system proceeds to one operational phase upon success and a different operational phase upon failure. Node blocks and stop blocks are also now supported.
BlockSim’s throughput analysis capabilities can be used to identify bottlenecks, optimize resource allocation and otherwise improve the processing efficiency of the system.
The software allows you to determine how the simulation will allocate the processed output (e.g., parts manufactured in an assembly line or volume of oil processed in a pipeline) across the paths defined in the diagram. The software also allows you to specify how the backlog will be processed.
When the throughput varies over time (e.g., if the flow from an oil well drops over time as the reserves are depleted), BlockSim provides a choice of models to describe the time-dependent variability (linear, exponential or power).
The new Simulation Worksheets feature allows you to vary values that are used in simulating a BlockSim RBD or RENO flowchart. This enables you to investigate the effect of one or more settings on the simulation results. Two of the most useful applications are the ability to:
- Design an experiment in DOE++ —> simulate the experiment in BlockSim or RENO —> then return to DOE++ and analyze the simulated "response" data.
- Perform batch simulation of an RBD, using different input values for each simulation. For example, this tool makes it easy to run a set of simulations that compare a variety of possible scenarios by altering specific inputs (e.g., cost, reliability, etc.) for each simulation.
Technical Advances to Improve Productivity
All Synthesis applications are now available in both 32-bit and 64-bit versions. We have added multi-thread support to take full advantage of the processing power on your computer, and also re-engineered/re-optimized much of the code, so you can now run simulations 10 to 50 times faster.
The Synthesis version also introduces a new Batch Mode feature that improves productivity by allowing you to schedule a series of simulations in advance. For example, you can set the simulations to run overnight and find the results waiting for you when you return to your desk in the morning!