Electro-mechanic devices for the automatic changing of gear were tested by company using the same accelerated life testing procedures in different stages of the product development. All the tested prototypes satisfied the experimental conditions for accelerated life tests, while 50% of components coming from the first sample of serial production showed crack phenomena during the same testing procedure. This situation can be related to a large number of undefined factors: from the variability of material proprieties or in production process parameters to accidentally different conditions in testing. The complete list of all the possibilities of variance was extremely complex to be defined, recognized and verified by new sets of experimental tests. FEM calculation permitted a fast simulation of the component response under the complex experimental testing conditions, modifying the interpretation of some experimental results and correctly driving the designer toward quick improvements of product.
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