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Detailed review of:

Maintenance Theory of Reliability




Springer Verlag




Toshio Nakagawa




Maintenance Theory of Reliability


Year of Publication














Krishna B. Misra




Review Published in IJPE, Vol. 2, No. 4, October, 2006, p. 398.

Table of Contents
  1. Introduction  (38 pages)

  2. 1.1     Reliability Measures
    1.2     Typical Failure Distributions
    1.3     Stochastic Processes

  3. Repair Maintenance (30 pages)

  4. 2.1     One-Unit System
    2.2     Standby System with Spare Units
    2.3     Other Redundant Systems

  5. Age Replacement (26 pages)

  6. 3.1     Replacement Policy
    3.2     Other Age Replacement Models
    3.3     Continuous and Discrete Replacement

  7. Periodic Replacement (22 pages)

  8. 4.1     Definition of Minimum Repair
    4.2     Periodic Replacement with Minimal Repair
    4.3     Periodic Replacement with Nth Failure
    4.4     Modified Replacement Models
    4.5     Replacement with Two Different Types

  9. Block Replacement (18 pages)

  10. 5.1     Replacement Policy
    5.2     No Replacement at Failure
    5.3     Replacement with Two Variables
    5.4     Combined Replacement Models

  11. Preventive Maintenance (35 pages)

  12. 6.1     One Unit System with Repair
    6.2     Two Unit System with Repair
    6.3     Modified Discrete Preventive Maintenance Policies

  13. Imperfect Preventive Maintenance (29 pages)

  14. 7.1     Imperfect Maintenance Policy
    7.2     Preventive Maintenance with Minimal Repair
    7.3     Inspection with Preventive Maintenance
    7.4     Computer System with Imperfect Maintenance
    7.5     Sequential Imperfect Preventive Maintenance

  15. Inspection Policies (33 pages)

  16. 8.1     Standard Inspection Policy
    8.2     Asymptotic Inspection Schedules
    8.3     Inspection for Standby Unit
    8.4     Inspection for a Storage System
    8.5     Intermittent Faults
    8.6     Inspection for Finite Interval

  17. Modified Maintenance Models (31 pages)

  18. 9.1     Modified Discrete Models
    9.2     Maintenance Policies for a Finite Interval
    9.3     Random Maintenance Policies
    9.4     Replacement Maximizing MTTF
    9.5     Discrete Replacement Maximizing MTTF
    9.6     Other Maintenance Policies

  19. Index (3 pages)


Maintenance is likely to become the most importance aspect of system performance in 21st century. The book by Prof. Nakagawa, who rightly claims this book as the summary of his research over three decades, therefore becomes a timely and important contribution to the

literature on maintenance engineering.  The book is written at a relatively advanced level and as such will appeal more to researchers, academics and maintenance engineers, who are interested in knowing various aspects of modelling techniques for their systems. The book begins with the discussion of usual system models for corrective maintenance with specified repair policies such as repair limit policy and moves on to treat the various aspects of age, periodic and block replacements including their optimum policies. Thereafter, the author describes perfect and imperfect preventive maintenance models. Many useful optimum preventive maintenance policies have been considered in the book. Further, the author describes several inspection models with different types units such as standby, storage and different types of failures such as extended failures (catastrophic, partial or degraded) and intermittent failures. Faults can be revealed or unrevealed. Underlying assumptions of each model and its limitations and merits have been adequately presented, which leaves no doubt in mind of a system analyst who intends to make use of these models. The in fact provides an up-to-date status of the various maintenance models that have been developed so far.

The reviewer would like to recommend this book to all maintenance engineers from various industries, plants and services who intend to make use of tools available to analyze their systems to reduce overall maintenance costs, which very often bother system managers and administrators. In the last chapter of the book, the author describes several modified maintenance models and suggests a few areas of further research. The book is very well written and is quite comprehensive. Each chapter of this 9-chapters book has a very long list of references appended to it, which is really good. However, it is felt that it would have been better if these were consolidated and listed at the end of the book to avoid repetition and the references should have been arranged in alphabetic order (of the first author's surname) or arranged chronologically to give an idea of historic developments of the subject. The index provided at the end is hardly two-and-half pages long and is considered in adequate for such an advance study, indexing finer details.

Krishna B. Misra

Review published in the International Journal of Performability Engineering, Vol. 2, No. 4, October 2006, p.397.

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