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Fault Tree Analysis (FTA)

Fault Tree analysis is one of the most widely-used methods in system reliability analysis. It is a deductive procedure for determining the various combinations of hardware and software failures, and human errors that could result in the occurrence of specified undesired events (referred to as top events) at the system level. A deductive analysis begins with a general conclusion, then attempts to determine the specific causes of this conclusion. This is often described as a "top down" approach.

The main purpose of a fault tree analysis is to evaluate the probability of the top event using analytical or statistical methods. These calculations involve system quantitative reliability and maintainability information, such as failure probability, failure rate, or repair rate. FTA can provide useful information concerning the likelihood of a failure and the means by which such a failure could occur. Efforts to improve system safety and reliability can be focused and refined using the results of the FTA.

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