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Plackett-Burman Designs

The Plackett-Burman design is a type of Resolution III experimental design that is often used as a screening design. The number of runs in a Plackett-Burman designs is a multiple of 4, thus avoiding the limitations of factorial and fractional factorial designs where the number of runs is 2k.

The generating vectors for selected Plackett-Burman designs are below:

 n=8 (+ + + - + - -) n=12 (+ + - + + + - - - + -) n=16 (+ + + + - + - + + - - + - - -) n=20 (+ + - - + + + + - + - + - - - - + + -) n=24 (+ + + + + - + - + + - - + + - - + - + - - - -) n=36 (- + - + + + - - - + + + + + - + + + - - + - - - - + - + - + + -- + -)

The generating vectors have ‘n-1’ rows. The last row of a Plackett-Burman design contains only ‘-‘ values.

The design will have 'n-1' columns and a factor will be allocated to each column:

• put the generating vector into the first column (column ‘A’)
• copy the last value from column A into the first row of column B
• slide the rest of the values from A below that value
• copy the last value from column B into the first row of column C
• slide the rest of the values from column B below that value
• continue until all the columns have been populated

 The Design of Experiments is covered in the MiC Quality basic Design of Experiments course and Advanced Design of Experiments course. Try out our courses by taking the first module of the Primer in Statistics free of charge.
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