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Supportability, Failure Modes, Effects, Criticality Analysis (SFMECA)

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What is SFMECA Training?

Supportability, Failure Modes, Effects, Criticality Analysis (SFMECA) training teaches an inductive analytical method performed at the functional level or for pieces and parts, which adds criticality analysis in the Supportability environment. This combination emphasizes failure modes with high probability and severe consequences such that remedial efforts can be aimed to produce the most effective and efficient value.

Where functional SFMECA focused on failure at the functional block level of a diagram, such as a computing center, piece part SFMECA focuses on the effects of individual component failures, such as resistors, transistors, microcircuits, or valves.

A piece part SFMECA tracks more detail and is more time consuming and resource intensive but delivers better estimates of probabilities of occurrence. Functional FMEAs which can be conducted earlier and more quickly, may provide critical information for a later and more complete risk assessment and provide other insights in mitigation options.

The criticality analysis may be quantitative or qualitative, depending on the availability of supporting part failure data.

Applicable industries include, but are not limited to, Manufacturing, Pharmaceutical, Food Processing, Chemical Processing, Mining, Facilities, Weapon Systems, Aerospace, Agriculture, Alternative Energy, Energy Distribution, and Power Generation.

The Goal

Supportability, Failure Modes, Effects, Criticality Analysis (SFMECA) aims to identify the probability of failure with pinpoint precision in a system or part to control severe consequences and complete pre-emptive intervention or quick remediation efforts.

Learn the failure modes, effects, and criticality analysis methods used at reliable, high-performance plants in a supportability environment to avoid catastrophic failure, increase uptime, add efficiency, and optimize the life cycle of physical assets and systems in the military, municipal and commercial sectors. Join the SFMECA certified technicians and physical asset owners in implementing and improving cost-effective maintenance programs using a logical and comprehensive MIL–STD–1629A compliant FMECA process.

SAE-J 1739 (Society of Automotive Engineers)

The technical standard: Design FMEA (Failure Mode and Effects Analysis)

J1739 describes Potential Failure Mode and Effects Analysis in Design (DFMEA) and Potential Failure Mode and Effects Analysis in Manufacturing and Assembly Processes (PFMEA). It assists users in the identification and mitigation of risk by providing appropriate terms, requirements, ranking charts, and worksheets. As a Standard, this document contains requirements “must” and recommendations “should” to guide the user through the FMEA process.

SFMECA is performed in a series of steps:

  • Define the system to which the process will be applied
  • Identify given assumptions and inherent structure of the system and process, (e.g., whether the SFMECA will cover systems or piece part analysis)
  • Develop block diagrams to trace the relationships and flow paths through the system by hierarchy identifying critical paths, and interfaces
  • Identify potential failure points
  • Analyze the effects of found failures
  • Apply results to design process
  • Rank failure effects by severity in matrix (e.g., negligible, marginal, critical, catastrophic)
  • Calculate criticality
  • Rank criticality (e.g., improbable, remote, occasional, probable, frequent)
  • Identify critical items
  • Apply results to design process
  • Determine failure detection, isolation and compensation processes
  • Analyze maintainability
  • Document
  • Recommendations
  • Corrective action implementation

Risk Priority Number (RPN) calculation is a result of a multiplication of detectability (D) x severity (S) x occurrence (O). With each on a scale from 1 to 10, the highest RPN is 10x10x10 = 1000. This means that this failure is not detectable by inspection, very severe and the occurrence is almost sure.

What You Will Learn:

  • Application of each step of the SFMECA process
  • Calculations for probability failure rates, criticality, and risk level
  • To assign risk priority numbers and create interventions for RPN percentage improvement
  • Parameter diagramming
  • Development of effective failure management strategies
  • An understanding of SFMECA’s role within lifecycle asset management


Supportability FMECA (Failure Modes, Effects, and Criticality Analysis) affects operations at all levels of the organization. This introductory course offering provides practical instruction and application in performing Supportability FMECA. The current course offering is intended for anyone performing Product Support Analysis (PSA) or FMECA in support of PSA.


SFMECA 101 • 2 days • Introduction to Supportability, Failure Modes, Effects, Criticality Analysis


  • An understanding of PSA disciplines as they relate to developing effective maintenance programs
  • Theory and practical experience needed to implement and perform SFMECA
  • Experience developing effective failure management strategies
  • An understanding of SFMECA’s role within lifecycle asset management
  • Ability to identify opportunities that may warrant a more in-depth reliability analysis


SFMECA training is beneficial to the military, municipal & commercial sectors, or anyone performing Product Support Analysis (PSA) or FMECA in support of PSA specifically:

  • Fleet/asset managers
  • Maintenance planners/managers
  • Reliability managers/engineers
  • Field service representatives
  • Logisticians
  • Supportability professionals

Phone : 904.637.2022 / 904.637.2024
ASI Fax : 904.637.2063
Office : 904.637.2020
Email :


In 1949, FMECA (Failure Modes, Effects, Criticality Analysis) was developed by the U.S military, with the publication of MIL–P–1629. By the early 1960s, NASA contractors incorporated variations of FMECA in their work, releasing its formal FMECA procedure in 1966 related to the Apollo program and later appeared in projects such as: Viking, Voyager, Magellan, and Galileo.

At the same time, in 1967 the Society for Automotive Engineers (SAE) released its first civil publication to address FMECA. Today civil aviation uses both FMEA and Fault Tree Analysis per SAE ARP4761 instead of FMECA.

In the 1970s, Ford Motor Company began using FMEA after experiencing problems related to the Ford Pinto. Its adoption by Ford led to widespread use across the automotive industry. By 1985, in Europe, the International Electrotechnical Commission published IEC 812 (now IEC 60812), addressing FMEA and FMECA for general use and The British Standards Institute published BS 5760–5 in 1991 for general purpose.

In 1980, MIL–STD–1629A replaced both MIL–STD–1629 and the 1977 aeronautical FMECA standard MIL–STD–2070. MIL–STD–1629A was canceled without replacement in 1998 but remains in use for military and space applications today.