Reliability Services in the Prototype Phase
Design Verification Testing (DVT)
A Design Verification Test is a method of testing a product to assure that it meets all of its design specifications. This is also referred to as Verification and Validation (V&V) Testing.
As soon as the first prototype is built, the product must begin testing to assure that it meets all of its specifications (verification). Once this is complete, it must then undergo further testing to assure that it works as the customer intends to use the product (validation).
The objective of a DVT is to assure that a product meets all of its specifications and all of the customer's use conditions prior to shipping the product.
VALUE TO YOUR ORGANIZATION
Prior to shipping a product, if we can assure that the product not only meets all of its specifications, but that it also will work in all customer applications, the reliability of the product in the field will be greatly increased. And for any issues that exist, the earlier we find them, the less expensive the fix will be.
An example of Reliability Integration during Design Verification Testing is as follows:
DVT Integrates Well with HALT
During DVT, electrical parameters are tested to their specifications, typically one parameter at a time. This assures us that the product meets its specifications but does not provide information about design margins. HALT can be used to do this. In HALT, we can take over where we left off in DVT with a variety of different parameters, including (but not limited to) voltage, load, frequency, and timing.
We start with the design specification document and then write a test plan to test each of the different requirements called out in the specification document. Then we work with marketing and customer service to identify specific customer use profiles and develop test cases for those as well. Often times, we will call upon our network of test labs to assist with the testing.
The following case studies and options provide example approaches. We shall tailor our approach to meet your specific situation.
1) Outsourcing the DVT Process
A small Medical Device company was developing a new product and did not want to staff up to create a special team devoted to the testing of the product because the testing was a relatively short-term event (a few months) and because they did not have time to staff up. This situation lent itself well to outsourcing the V&V piece of their development process to us.
2) Using HALT to Expand Margins After a DVT Failure
A Networking company had a product that passed its DVT but was still having field failures due to products not meeting certain test parameters. We ran HALT on the product and determined that the product did not have sufficient design margins. We came up with specific findings and recommended changes to expand these margins, thereby improving the field reliability.