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Volume 13 - 2017

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Detailed review of: 

Handbook of Engineering Statistics





Springer Verlag, London




Hoang Pham




Springer Handbook of Engineering Statistics


Year of Publication














Krishna B. Misra




Review published in IJPE, Vol. 3, No. 3, July, 2007, p. 391.

Table of Contents
Preface  (1 page)
List of Authors     (10 pages)
Contents     (13 pages)
List of Tables     (10 pages)
List of Abbreviations    (4 pages)
There are six parts of the Handbook, viz.,
Part A: Fundamental Statistics and its Applications
          (169 pages, consisting of 9 chapters)
Part B: Process Monitoring and Improvement
          (174 pages, consisting of 9 chapters)
Part C: Reliability Models and Survival Analysis
          (176 pages, consisting of 9 chapters)
Part D: Regression Methods and Data Mining
          (169 pages, consisting of 9 chapters)
Part E:  Modeling and Simulation Methods
          (178 pages, consisting of 10 chapters)
Part F:  Applications in Engineering Statistics
          (216 pages, consisting of 8 chapters)
Acknowledgements    (2 pages)
About Authors     (18 pages)
Detailed Contents    
          (28 pages (this is in addition to 13–page contents given in the beginning)
Subject Index    (8 pages)

This is the second handbook from the editor within three years. The first one, a 663-pages Handbook of Reliability Engineering, was also publis

Springer Handbook of Engineering Statistics

hed by Springer in 2003. Also in this year itself, he has published two more books with Springer, viz., System Software Reliability and Reliability and Optimal Maintenance. In 2000 also, he wrote a book on Software Reliability, again published by Springer. In 2001, he brought out a book, titled Recent Advances in Reliability and Quality Engineering, published by World Scientific. But this handbook is a huge volume. The statistics about the Springer Handbook of Engineering Statistics runs as follows: double columned 1120+XLIV pages, size 20 cms. X 25 cms, weight 2.48 kgs, 54 chapters organized in six sections and 100 authors (58 from U.S.A., 8 from Australia, 6 from Italy, 5 each from Korea and China, 3 each from Japan and Singapore, 2 each from New Zealand, India and Scotland, and one each from, Germany, France, The Netherlands, Spain, South Africa and Taiwan). Definitely, the book can only be procured by the libraries of organizations and universities, though individuals, teachers and students may not be able to afford a personal copy. 

The editor of the Handbook is a well-known professor and is a prolific author and editor, who has written or edited 15 books (6 books in 2006 alone), 30 book chapters and 90 research papers and is an Editor of Springer's Series on Reliability Engineering, besides being the Chief Editor of an International Journal, of Reliability, Quality and Safety Engineering, published by World Scientific. It is not clear to the reviewer, what made the editor of this Handbook bring out separate books on Software reliability, reliability and maintenance when he is discussing these topics as parts of the present handbook. 

Undoubtedly, statistics is everybody's concern. Therefore, a handbook of statistics is a necessity, particularly, to engineers of all disciplines. Engineers usually have huge operational data which helps them improve upon the design, manufacturing, testing and operations of their systems or products. It is therefore necessary that they know how to use the data and interpret results of an analysis. Thus a Handbook on statistics is of great use to engineers.

Since the editor's research interests include software reliability, system reliability modeling, maintenance, and environmental risk assessment, it is natural for editor to see the handbook on engineering statistic also through the reliability perspective. It is true that the editor has tried to include statistics applications in other areas such as DNA sequence evolution, biological statistical models, financial engineering but major applications have been in the areas related to reliability, maintenance and quality control or process monitoring and improvement. It would have been better if the editor had confined his scope of statistics to applications to reliability engineering and allied areas only since statistics is all pervading and it would be difficult if not impossible to prepare a book which lists applications of statistics to all possible areas.

The general comment about organization of various parts of the handbook is that the chapters included in a particular part do not necessary represent the title of that part. For example, the last chapter of Optimum System Design should have been Part C rather than under Applications in Engineering Statistics. For the same reason, chapter 9 should not have been in Part A but in Part F. Also chapter such as 26 could have been a part of Part F. All software chapters such as chapter 25 should also have been in Part F. It can be argued why chapter Six Sigma be included in Part F rather than Part B. I would have been better if the editor would have classified parts as: A-Fundamental Statistics, B- Modelling and Simulation, C- Data Mining and Regression Analysis, D- Applications in Manufacturing and Quality Monitoring, E-Applications in Reliability Engineering, F- Applications in Maintenance Engineering, G- Applications in Testing and Risk Studies , H- Applications in other areas ( such as Genetics etc.) without attempting to equalize chapters in each Part, which is not necessary. However, it must be said that the editor has achieved to produce a gigantic book on Statistics.

Let's have a look at the six parts that the Handbook comprises.

Part A consists of 9 chapters, of which 4 chapters provide the discussion of basic statistical concepts and various statistical distributions usually found in any standard statistics book. The other chapters include diverse topics such as two dimensional (two axes representing age and usage) failure model which is briefly touched upon, promotional warranty policies, Stationary Marked Point Processes and modelling and analysis of yield, burn in and reliability for semiconductor manufacturing (which appears to be out of place in this section.

Part B also consists of 9 chapters under the heading of Process Monitoring and Improvement and includes chapters on Statistical Methods for Quality and Productivity Improvement, Statistical Methods for Product and Process Improvement , Robust Optimization in Quality Engineering, Uniform Design and its Industrial Applications, Cuscore Statistics: Directed Process Monitoring for Early Problem Detection, Chain Sampling, Some Statistical Models for the Monitoring of High-Quality Processes, Monitoring Process Variability using EWMA, and Multivariate Statistical Process Control Schemes for Controlling a Mean. This section is homogeneous in contents and is well developed.

Part C on Reliability Modelling and Survival Analysis also has 9 chapters, viz., Statistical Survival Analysis with Applications, Failure Rates in Heterogeneous Populations, Proportional Hazards Regression Models, Accelerated Life Test Models and Data Analysis, Statistical Approaches to Planning of Accelerated Reliability Testing, End to End Testing and Evaluation of High-Assurance Systems, Statistical Models in Software Reliability and Operations Research, An Experimental Study of Human Factors in Software Reliability  based on a Quality Engineering Approach, and Statistical Models for Predicting Reliability of Software Systems in Random Environments.

Part D on Regression Methods and Data Mining also has nine chapters, which include, Measures of Influence and Sensitivity in Linear Regression, Logistic Regression Tree Analysis, Tree-based Methods and their Applications, Image Registration and Unknown Coordinate Systems, Statistical Genetics for Genome Data Analysis, Statistical Methodologies for Analyzing Genome Data, Statistical Methods in Proteomics, Radical Basis Functions for Data Mining, and Data Mining Methods and Applications.

Part E of the book on Modeling and Simulation has 10 chapters, which include discussion on Bootstrap , Markov Chain and Estimating Functions, Random Effects, Cluster Randomized Trials: Design and Analysis, A Two-Way Semi-linear Model for Normalization and Analysis, Latent Variable Models for Longitudinal Data with Flexible Measurement Schedule, Genetic Algorithms and their Applications, Scan Statistics, Condition-Based Failure Prediction, Statistical Maintenance Modeling for Complex Systems, and Statistical Models on Maintenance.

Finally, Part F of the Handbook on Applications in Engineering Statistics has eight chapters which include, Risks and Assets Pricing, Statistical Management and Modeling for Demand of Spare Parts, Arithmetic and Geometric Processes, Six Sigma, Multivariate Modeling with Copulas and Engineering Applications, Queuing Theory Applications to Communication Systems: Control of Traffic Flows and Load Balancing, Support Vector Machines for Data Modeling with Software Engineering Applications, and Optimal System Design.

In short, the Springer Handbook on Engineering Statistics is going to be useful to engineers at large, particularly to engineers engaged in manufacturing, design, testing and operations.

Krishna B. Misra

Review published in the International Journal of Performability Engineering, Vol. 3, No. 3, July 2007, p. 391.


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