Failure Prediction - An Application in the Railway Industry

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Rita Paula Ribeiro
João Gama
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Machine or system failures have high impact both at technical and economic levels. Most modern equipment has logging systems that allow us to collect a diversity of data regarding their operation and health. Using data mining models for novelty detection enables us to explore those datasets, building classification systems that can detect and issue an alert when a failure starts evolving, avoiding the unknown development up to breakdown. In the present case we use a failure detection system to predict train doors breakdowns before they happen using data from their logging system. We study three methods for failure detection: outlier detection, novelty detection and a supervised SVM. Given the problem's features, namely the possibility of a passenger interrupting the movement of a door, the three predictors are prone to false alarms. The main contribution of this work is the use of a low-pass filter to process the output of the predictors leading to a strong reduction in the false alarm rate.