An optimal strategy in multi-server stochastic scheduling

R.R. Weber and P. Nash. J. R. Statist. Soc. B40, 322-327, 1979.


Identical components are available for us in a piece of machinery.  The number of
components needed to operate the machine is a function of time and the lifetime
of each component is described by a known probability distribution.  Once a 
certain number of components have failed there will not be enough left to
operate the machine.  We find a strategy which for certain lifetime distributions
delays this occurrence for as long as possible.

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