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Reliability Improvement Services


Two Primary Reasons to Study Aging:

  • Input for Design, Materials Selection, and Processing to decelerate the damage

  • To understand the degradation kinetics and pathways for the current configuration

Investigation Difficulties

Biggest practical concern/issue

  • How to correlate the test results to service life.

  • Generally requires a large number of very expensive and time-consuming tests

Building Block Approach

  • Separate the damage mechanisms based on Armor configuration

  • Determine the rate controlling degrader and the rate controlling location

  • Determine the damage kinetics for the rate controller

  • Provide property deltas as inputs to analytical/numerical model(s)

  • Estimate system response as a function of usage TIME

Fundamental Considerations


Intrinsic Effects

  • Degraders

    • Temperature

    • Stress

    • Moisture

  • Investigate degradation kinetics for each degrader (as appropriate)

  • Superposition through appropriate analytical/numerical modeling (discussed later)

Interaction Effects

  • Degraders

    • Interfacial reactions

    • Interfacial stress accumulation

    • Temperature

    • Stress

    • Moisture

  • Investigate degradation kinetics for each degrader

  • Compare Intrinsic and Interaction rates

Test Considerations

  • At the test level, the main issues are:

    • How to measure aging

    • How to accelerate the process of aging so that a measurable response can be attained

    • How to analyze the data in order to isolate the weakest link in the configuration (fastest degrading location)

    • In practical terms, it is useful to focus on properties that respond to the sum total of all the aging processes rather than the mechanistic details of aging


  • Determine the weakest link in terms of the damage rate control location

  • Determine the rate-controlling degrader for the weakest link

    • Thermal

    • Thermal cycling

    • Mechanical stress

    • Environmental stress (e.g. corroding ions..)

    • ....

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