Quality assurance is the corporate effort that is specifically
aimed at reducing process variation by improving process controls during
product development and manufacture, and by taking measures to prevent
recurrence of detected problems. Quality assurance also addresses those
techniques that will give the customer confidence that future components and
assembly processes will have equivalent or better reliability than current
components and assembly processes.
Assurance of component and assembly quality should be
established before the part and assembly process is approved for use.
Suppliers should have procedures for verifying that selected components will
operate reliably in the intended environment for the life of the equipment.
Component qualification processes should be documented or referenced in the
PMP. Testing should be conducted to verify that the proposed components will
satisfactorily operate in the intended environment with acceptable
reliability. This verification usually takes the form of a qualification test
and screening. However, other methods may be proposed, such as extensive field
experience of the proposed parts in similar applications or previous
contractor qualification data which is valid for the intended application.
Furthermore, evidence of quality assembly processes should be demonstrated and
documented to ensure reliability at higher levels of integration. The supplier
should ensure that the component quality is maintained during the manufacture of equipment. The component reliability
should not be compromised by equipment manufacturing processes such as
handling or assembly.