Course detail

Fundamentals of Dependability Theory

FSI-RZTAcad. year: 2017/2018

The course is concerned with the following topics: Significance of the quality (and its most important parameter - dependability) for successful use of the product on the market.
Definition of the basic terms. Survey of the most important methods for securing dependability of technical systems. Application in the assessment of the limit states of structures - interference theory, approximation methods FORM and SORM, simulation-based methods. Operational dependability.

Learning outcomes of the course unit

Students will be acquainted with modern methods of dependability assessment of products in various periods of their lifetime. The main attention is paid to the use of the Theory of dependability in limit states of structures and to the assessment of their reliability and durability from the probability point of view.


Basic knowledge of probability theory, Boole´s algebra and mathematical statistics.


Not applicable.

Recommended optional programme components

Not applicable.

Recommended or required reading

Villemeur, A.:: Reliability, Availability, Maintainability and Safety, John Wiley&Sons, New York 1992
Holub R. - Vintr Z.: Spolehlivost letadlové techniky. VUT FSI 2001
Holub, R.:: Zkoušky spolehlivosti, VA Brno 1992
O´Connor, P.D.T: Practical Reliability Engineering, John Wiley&Sons, New York 1995
Mykiska, A.: Spolehlivost technických systémů, ČVUT Praha 2000
Sundararajan C.R.: Probabilistic Structural Mechanics Handbook,Chapman&Hall, New York 1995

Planned learning activities and teaching methods

The course is taught through lectures explaining the basic principles and theory of the discipline. Exercises are focused on practical topics presented in lectures.

Assesment methods and criteria linked to learning outcomes

Graded course-unit credit requirements: active participation in seminars, well-elaborated assignments, solving additional assignments due to absence. Seminar tutor will specify these conditions in the first week of semester.
Course unit credist will be awarded based on evaluation of the project.

Language of instruction


Work placements

Not applicable.


The objective of the course is to make students familiar with elementary terms in the Theory of dependability and with the most significant methods of active dependability provision of structures in their life periods such as research, development, production and utilization. The emphasis is put on most significant characters, i.e. as safety, durability and reliability in the probability conception.

Specification of controlled education, way of implementation and compensation for absences

Attendance at practical training is obligatory. More absences are compensated by additional assignments according to the instructions of the tutor.

Classification of course in study plans

  • Programme M2A-P Master's

    branch M-IMB , 1. year of study, summer semester, 5 credits, compulsory

Type of course unit



26 hours, optionally

Teacher / Lecturer


1. Quality and dependability – meaning and guarantee, elementary terms.
2. Conditions and actions of products. Reliability and durability indexes.
3. Dependability theory in limit states of structures. Design conceptions.
4. Methods for dependability assessment. Variability of input quantities.
5. Theory of interference – static model.
6. Theory of interference – dynamic model. Classification of methods.
7. Approximate methods FORM and SORM. Methods of simulation.
8. Systems dependability analysis – resources, general procedure.
9. Reliability block diagrams.
10. Methods FMEA/FMECA
11. Fault-tree and event-tree analysis.
12. Markov´s analysis.
13. Dependability testing. Service dependability

Computer-assisted exercise

26 hours, compulsory

Teacher / Lecturer


1. Characteristics of random variables. Discrete distributions in dependability.
2. Continuous distributions in dependability. The Poisson and exponential distributions.
3. The Weibull three- and two-parameter distributions.
4. The Gaussian distribution.
5. Characteristics of combination random quantities.
6. Probability density and cumulative distribution function for combination of random
quantities (system MAPLE).
7. (completion)
8. Interference theory and systems MAPLE, MATLAB.
9. Probabilistic analysis in system ANSYS.
10. Probabilistic analysis in system ANSYS Workbench.
11. Presentation of selected programm systems focused on dependability.
12. (completion)
13. Graded course-unit credit.