Experience has shown that introducing risk analysis in the initial phases of any design often has important beneficial effects on both safety and economy. It has also become well accepted that structural design can occur on a sounder basis if the concepts of structural reliability are applied, in that they provide a consistent base to deal with uncertainties and to establish safety factors. Finally the operational cost of running installations depends very much on the maintenance policies applied and these in turn can translate their efficiency in terms of reliability of the systems that are maintained. The mathematical tools available to deal with these different types of problems are are somewhat different, but they have several common features. The main one is the use of probalistic models to predict the probability of failure or its complement reliability. This book explores the complementarity that exists among these different types of formulations, by presenting an overall view of the tools that can be used in the phase of conceptual design, of detail design and in the operational phase.
Emphasis is on Marine Technology in that most of the applications presented are related either to offshore platforms or to ships. However, the applicability of the methods presented is not restricted to this field. In particular, the contributions on reliability of systems are very general and applicable to any type of system repairable or non-repairable.
The work is broadly organised in three sections dealing with risk assessment, structural reliability and system reliability. In the first section the main methods of quantitative risk analysis are presented together with case studies that provide an illustration of how they can be applied. The section on structural reliability presents the probalistic formulations that are required for the reliability assessment of the marine structures. The last section deals with reliability of systems, a formulation that is essential for the different types of equipment existing in ship and offshore platforms. Contributions are by a group of international experts in the field.