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Dana Thermal (Automotive)

Accelerated life testing to save time and money in auto parts design

Introduction: Harland MacKenzie is a Reliability Engineer at Dana Canada Corp., Thermal Products Division, a part of Dana Inc.

Company: Dana Inc. is a Fortune 500 manufacturer and distributor of vehicle drivetrain, sealing and thermal control parts. The thermal products division is based in Oakville, Ontario, Canada. Dana Inc. employs nearly 29,000 people in 34 countries.

Role: MacKenzie does accelerated life testing and analysis on vehicle thermal control parts and systems to maximize reliability given the tough, real-world conditions faced by Dana’s vehicle manufacturing clients and their retail customers.

Challenge

"In the auto industry, vehicle testing is very slow and very expensive. And by the time you get the data back, if there are issues, you don’t have a lot of time to correct them before launch. So it required the development of several different prototypes, and evaluating those prototypes, not through vehicle testing, but through accelerated life testing. The parts that seemed fine on the bench did not do as well in the vehicle."

Solution

“Using ReliaSoft ALTA and Weibull++ software, I was able to develop accelerated life cycles using a 'shaker' to evaluate the different prototypes. The development of the accelerated life testing and the ability to analyze using ReliaSoft products allowed me to figure out which of the three or four prototypes not only met the vehicle requirements, but also provided an ability to be manufactured, and provide the design changes in the time needed.”

Benefit

"Weibull++ and ALTA really allowed me to have the freedom to experiment on my data and not worry about the math behind the scene. That was absolutely critical to me. The ability to analyze the data and produce a consistent output, and then be able to take to a customer, that’s what really allowed us to really present our case in comparison to our competitor’s product, in a way that the customer’s engineering team had never seen before."