Maintenance policy selection for ships: finding the most important criteria and considerations

Adriaan Goossens, Robertus Johannes Ida Basten

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Maintenance of technical capital assets is gaining increasing attention, as maintenance is an important contributor to reach the intended life-time of these expensive assets. This paper focusses on maintenance policy selection (MPS) for ships using the Analytic Hierarchy Process. It builds on earlier research where we have investigated MPS specifically for naval ships. Here, we aim to generalize our findings on naval ships towards ships in general, and to elicit the most important criteria for ship MPS. We propose an improved hierarchy of criteria that we use during six workshops at six di erent companies to investigate MPS. We conclude that it is possible to obtain meaningful outcomes using a single hierarchy of criteria at multiple companies considering various ship types. The workshops reveal that crew safety is the most important criterion when selecting a maintenance policy, followed by reliability and availability—surprisingly, costs minimization is only moderately important. Furthermore, the workshops reveal that softer criteria, such as experience with maintenance and planability, must be included in the MPS process. Finally, we see that, for ship MPS, failure-based maintenance is never preferred, and that there is no clear preference for either time/use-based maintenance or condition-based maintenance.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationEindhoven, the Netherlands
PublisherTU Eindhoven, Research School for Operations Management and Logistics (BETA)
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - 2016

Publication series

NameBETA working paper series
PublisherTU Eindhoven, Beta Research School for Operations Management and Logistics


  • METIS-321869
  • IR-104017


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