Excelsior Statistics and Optimization

Business and Industrial Statistics

A good statistician can do much more for your business than just simple charting and trending. Contact me today and find out what I can do to help your business make good decisions.

Do you need to separate a seasonal cycle from a growth trend? Are you suffering a rash of equipment breakdowns in your factory, and you want to know if it’s poor maintenance, aging equipment, or just a run of bad luck? Perhaps you need to do destructive testing on your product, and you want to test just enough samples to learn whether you’ve met your quality target, but no more. Perhaps you need to decide whether it is more cost-effective to buy a snowplow and a backup generator, or to accept the lost productivity of shutting down after a winter storm.

Loss of offsite power at nuclear power plants
Estimating how often power outages affect operations at nuclear plants (click to enlarge)

We can help you take the data you already collect, combine it with data from the census department or weather bureau if necessary, and get the answers you need. Alternatively, if you present us with a question you can’t answer with your current data, we can help you design an efficient way to collect the data you need.

In recent years I’ve been asked to study the failure rates of pumps and valves in power plants; modeled the increasing unreliability of the power grid (see graph above); done calculations to predict the precision of a new gas pressure measurement instrument based on the specifications of the sensors and piping used; and estimated the change in volume of fuel irradiated in a nuclear reactor when it couldn’t be directly observed. (PDF of Journal of Nuclear Materials article available)

This page last edited 10.09.17

Industry helped give birth to modern statistics!

One of the most basic and commonly used statistical tools, the Student's t-test, was created by W. S. Gossett, an employee of the Guinness Brewery (yes, the same Guinness you drink on St. Patrick's Day today) in the course of his duties monitoring the quality of the brewery's output.

Many other leading lights in statistics also spent large portions of their careers working in industry: for istance, John Tukey at Bell Labs, and Ronald Fisher at the Rothamstad agricultural experiment station.