Sampling / Test Plan Development

Sampling provides qualitative and quantitative information concerning a process or product. Although desirable, 100% sampling is rarely possible due to costs, time, or destructive testing methods. Thus, it is important to develop a sampling plan that balances the information obtained from the tests with the costs and time to conduct the test. Important considerations for developing a sampling plan include:

  • Understanding the Specific Application:
    • Applying engineering judgment to facilitate selection of appropriate variables and their assumed distributions (e.g., Gaussian, Poisson)
    • Identifying the right values to measure in order to reduce the number of tests

  • Sample Size Selection:
    • Information is not free - sampling plan should consider costs of each observation
    • Too few samples may fail to identify false negatives

  • Complexity Reduction:
    • Applying designed experiments to make testing more efficient
    • Designing appropriate accelerated tests to reduce test length and cost.

Exponent specialists can help organizations develop good data collection and analysis techniques to measure the quality of the raw materials, components, products, and assemblies. We can guide an organization through creation of a sampling or test plans by applying specific methods such as:

  • Power and Sample Size Calculations
  • Design of Experiments (DOE)
  • Test to Failure
  • Accelerated Testing
  • Acceptance Testing (e.g., ASQ, ANSI, ASTM, Mil-Std methods).