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The impact of diversity upon common mode failures

Littlewood, B. (1996). The impact of diversity upon common mode failures. Reliability Engineering & System Safety, 51(1), pp. 101-113. doi: 10.1016/0951-8320(95)00120-4


Recent models for the failure behaviour of systems involving redundancy and diversity have shown that common mode failures can be accounted for in terms of the variability of the failure probability of components over operational environments. Whenever such variability is present, we can expect that the overall system reliability will be less than we could have expected if the components could have been assumed to fail independently. We generalise a model of hardware redundancy due to Hughes [Hughes 1987], and show that with forced diversity, this unwelcome result no longer applies: in fact it becomes theoretically possible to do better than would be the case under independence of failures.

Publication Type: Article
Subjects: Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA76 Computer software
Departments: School of Science & Technology > Computer Science > Software Reliability
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