Performance analysis of redundant safety-instrumented systems subject to degradation and external demands
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Safety-instrumented systems (SISs) play a vital role in preventing hazardous events in the offshore facilities. Many of existing performance analysis of SISs are based on the constant failure rate assumption, which is however doubtful when it is applied to actuator sub-systems or mechanical final elements of a SIS. These mechanical SIS components can become vulnerable with time and with upcoming demands given the past exposures to shocks/demands. In this paper, we analyze SIS reliability and unavailability by considering that a failure occurs when total degradation of a SIS component, including continuous degradation and increments caused by random demands, exceeds to a predefined critical threshold. The dependency of two components in a redundant structure of mechanical actuators caused by random demands is also taken into account in the analysis. Approximation formulas for reliability and unavailability of the redundant SIS sub-system under a degradation process are developed. Finally, a numerical example is conducted to illustrate effects of degradation parameters on SIS performance.