Derating Analysis for Electronic Components

What is component derating analysis?

The maximum rating for applied component stress (current, voltage, power, temperature, etc.) is defined by the manufacturer, and even stricter derating guidelines are defined to increase product robustness. Component derating analysis defines the optimal operating range for each component.


Why You Need Component Derating Analysis

Component damage may occur when it is subjected to power, current, voltage, or temperature which surpass its maximum stress rating.
Electrical overstress affects product performance, and is the leading cause of field returns.

Failure Pareto Analysis

Figure 1: Typical failure Pareto analysis


Many engineers select components that have a maximal rating which is twice the expected actual stress. However, as temperatures increase, component performance deteriorates, this practice becomes insufficient, and derating guidelines must be applied.


Component derating analysis helps you select the optimal components rating according to stress load and temperature.

Derating analysis for electronic components

Figure 2: Example component derating guideline


The analysis detects over-rating (red) and over-derating (yellow) components. Over-designed components are also detected when stress is much lower than the rating.
In many companies, the process is performed manually and includes time-consuming tasks: Calculating component stresses and comparing the result with the derating guidelines for each component type.


BQR Component Derating Analysis

The BQR solution automates the manual process of component stress and derating analysis, optimizing the component selection for reliability and cost effectiveness.


  • Plug-Ins for major E-CADs (Altium, Mentor, OrCad) provide easy BOM import as well as presenting results on the schematic design.
  • Stress can be input semi-automatically, or calculated using a unique circuit stress simulator.
  • The derating guidelines can be customized according to standards [1-6] or your company’s practice.
  • Thermal placement guidelines in the form of a Pareto list, for optimal placement during layout.

Additional uses for stress results:

Once the component stresses are defined, additional analyses can be held:

  • BQR’s patented schematic review detects a wide variety of design errors before layout. Some of the errors depend on stress, for example: incorrect applied voltage.
  • BQR’s MTBF calculation software uses the defined stresses for realistic MTBF prediction.




[1] ECSS-Q-ST-30-11C Space product assurance – Derating – EEE components
[2] US Navy Derating Guideline, SD-18
[3] Air force space command SMC Standard SMC-S-010
[4] NASA EEE-INST-002 Instructions for EEE Parts Selection, Screening, Qualification, and Derating
[5] IPC-9592 Performance Parameters for Power Conversion Devices
[6] Mil-Hdbk-338 Military Handbook Electronic Reliability Design Handbook