control chart

  

Definition

Statistical tool used in quality control to (1) analyze and understand process variables, (2) determine process capabilities, and to (3) monitor effects of the variables on the difference between target and actual performance. Control charts indicate upper and lower control limits, and often include a central (average) line, to help detect trend of plotted values. If all data points are within the control limits, variations in the values may be due to a common cause and process is said to be 'in control'. If data points fall outside the control limits, variations may be due to a special cause and the process is said to be out of control.

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