Interval availability analysis of a two-echelon, multi-item system

Ahmad Al Hanbali*, Matthieu Van Der Heijden

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


In this paper we analyze the interval availability of a two-echelon, multi-item spare part inventory system. We consider a scenario inspired by a situation that we encountered at Thales Netherlands, a manufacturer of naval sensors and naval command and control systems. Modeling the complete system as a Markov chain we analyze the interval availability and we compute in closed and exact form the expectation and the variance of the availability during a finite time interval [0, T]. We use these characteristics to approximate the survival function using a Beta distribution, together with the probability that the interval availability is equal to one. Comparison of our approximation with simulation shows excellent accuracy, especially for points of the distribution function below the mean value. The latter points are practically most relevant.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)494-503
Number of pages10
JournalEuropean Journal of Operational Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Aug 2013
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research is part of the project on Proactive Service Logistics of advanced capital goods (ProSeLo) and has been sponsored by the Dutch Institute for Advanced Logistics (Dinalog).


  • Interval availability
  • Inventory
  • Markov processes
  • Reliability
  • Service logistics
  • Supply chain management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science (all)
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Management Science and Operations Research
  • Information Systems and Management


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