July 2020

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Reliability: Finding a maintenance cost optimum

An Italian company is among those that design and build industrial machinery for the tissue industry.

Bloch, Heinz P., Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

An Italian company is among those that design and build industrial machinery for the tissue industry. One of the company’s service engineers was reading a book on machinery uptime1 when he asked us to clarify the concept its authors had tried to convey in FIG. 1. What puzzled the reader was an accompanying statement to the effect that maintenance and operating costs decrease as initial capital increases, up to a benchmark point of maintenance costs. FIG. 1. Minimizing total lifecycle cost, top curve. We formulated a reply, using a simple, two-point analogy with airplanes: Suppose an Airbus 380 costs 10 times what an inter-city/regional plane

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