Reliability HotWire: eMagazine for the Reliability Professional
Reliability HotWire

Issue 61, March 2006

Tool Tips

* Can the order of execution of Flag Markers in a RENO flowchart be changed?
A Flag Marker marks a spot in the path of a RENO flowchart. It is mainly intended to be used in conjunction with the Go to Flag Construct which calls, or sets the simulation point to, a Flag Marker within the same flowchart. If a Flag Marker is in a starting position, you can select to have the Flag Marker execute only when it is called by right-clicking it and selecting Execute On Call Only from the shortcut menu that appears. This allows you to create subroutines within the current flowchart that will be executed only if they are called by a Go to Flag.

If the order in which Flag Markers are executed is essential to your flowchart, the Ordered Relations command available from the Block menu can be used to specify the order of execution. This command shows the order of the paths proceeding from the selected block by displaying numbers above the relationship lines, specifying that the simulation will execute these paths in the specified order. The simplest way to create an order is to select the source block, select Ordered Relations and then draw the relationship lines. If the lines have already been drawn, you can drag them to different destination blocks (this may require deleting one or more relationship lines to avoid duplicate relations). You can click another block or the Flowchart to de-select the block and relationship lines; the numbers will remain in place until you de-select Ordered Relations for the block.

Chapter 3 of the RENO User's Guide provides more information on Flag Markers and their default order of execution.

* How can RCM++ and Xfmea help keep track of an analysis from start to finish?
Both RCM++ and Xfmea have an Analysis Plan utility to assist in your project planning and management. You can have multiple plans in a project and you can assign an analysis plan to an item at any level of the system hierarchy. For example, you might want to only assign an analysis plan to the top-level system if you want the entire project to be covered by one plan or you might prefer to have a separate analysis plan for each subsystem. The analysis plans are managed in the Analysis Plans Overview window, which displays all analysis plans from every project in a database, as shown next.

Each analysis plan has a properties window, which consists of the following pages:

The Team page, which allows you to specify the members of the team who are involved with the project. Members can be added manually or imported from a list of users assigned to the database.


The Analysis Checklist page, which allows you to define the tasks involved in your analysis and keep track of their completion, including estimated completion dates, actual completion dates and an estimator to help you determine the current overall percent complete. You can work from an analysis checklist in the active library or you can create your own and, if desired, add it to the library for future use.


The Ground Rules and Assumptions page, which allows you to list the information that all members of the analysis team will use to make judgments in the analysis. You can work from a list of assumptions in the active library or you can create your own and, if desired, add it to the library for future use.


The Work Sessions page, which allows you to track the time spent working on the analysis and the members who have attended each session.


The Quality Survy page, which allows you to track team members assessments of how effective the FMEA/RCM analysis process has been. You can work from a survey in the active library or you can create your own and, if desired, add it to the library for future use. Each user involved in the process may answer the survey questions after the analysis is complete. You can either enter the average rating or enter the individual responses to a question using the built-in calculator.

Please see the RCM++ Users Guide or the Xmfea Users Guide for more information on analysis plans.

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