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Verifying the X55

Rolling stock verification, pursuant with the FRACAS process to show compliance with reliability requirements. This was a major challenge facing Bombardier, and of course vital to ensure the customer’s, SJ AB, satisfaction.

Bombardier determined that Systecon, with its
experience of reliability, FRACAS and Life Cycle
Management, had the perfect expertise to lead
this important task which was necessary for the
customer’s final acceptance and approval of the
vehicles.

Demonstration of Reliability

Emil Eriksson, Bombardier’s Project Manager for X55:

We chose Systecon because of its experience within the field of reliability and the long partnership between Bombardier and Systecon.

Systecon’s consultants engaged in the project had good project management skills and broad technical expertise – a must for developing a constructive partnership with the parties involved and for the smooth, efficient running of validation and verification activities.

To ensure delivered vehicles successfully demonstrated fulfilment of the reliability requirements within the allotted time frame, efforts were focused on the following key aspects within the FRACAS process:

  • Rapid capture and identification of new, significant failure modes.
  • Concentration of organizational efforts on quickly identifying root causes of faults and the subsequent development and implementation of solutions.
  • Monitoring results of implemented solutions.  

Systecon lead the FRACAS process (Failure Reporting, Analysis, and Corrective Action System), a structured process employed by Bombardier for many years. It included leading a verification team requiring close collaboration with internal and external parties, and with significant requirements placed on reporting of vehicle performance.  By convening and engaging the central actors – the operator, maintainer and vehicle supplier -- centralized reporting procedures were quickly established and reports from traffic and maintenance were analyzed and classified through regular status meetings. Recurring failures were returned to the correct functions within the delivery project for further analysis. Solutions were developed and implemented on vehicles in service. The performance of the new solution was monitored.

Progress for all of these simultaneous, ongoing activities – identification of dominant failure modes, root cause analysis, prototyping, testing, negotiations with supplier, quality controls, implementation on vehicles – were monitored by Systecon using the FRACAS procedure. Results were used to update reliability growth forecasts and steer efforts according to the reliability requirements of the project.

This structured approach enabled Bombardier and SJ to make informed decisions during the whole verification and validation period. It started in the fall of 2011 and was completed in 2013 and was one of the major milestones for Final Acceptance by SJ of the delivered vehicles from Bombardier.

Emil Eriksson, Bombardier’s Project Manager for X55 was extremely satisfied with Systecon's efforts, expertise and professionalism during the project:

With Systecons experience of reliability verification and FRACAS implementation together with Bombardiers strong technical expertise a well balanced team was put together and built the most reliable vehicle of Swedish railways and also achieved the most successful vehicle introduction ever in Sweden.