Semiparametric Estimation of Gamma Processes for Deteriorating Products

This article investigates the semiparametric inference of the simple Gamma-process model and a random-effects variant. Maximum likelihood estimates of the parameters are obtained through the EM algorithm. The bootstrap is used to construct confidence intervals. A simulation study reveals that an estimation based on the full likelihood method is more efficient than the pseudo likelihood method. In addition, a score test is developed to examine the existence of random effects under the semiparametric scenario. A comparison study using a fatigue-crack growth dataset shows that performance of a semiparametric estimation is comparable to the parametric counterpart. This article has supplementary material online.