Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department

Mathematics and Statistics

Major Professor

Chris P. Tsokos, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Gangaram Ladde, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Kandethody Ramachandran, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Marcus McWaters, Ph.D.


Gumbel, Bayesian, Optimal bandwidth, Target time, Unbiased estimation


In the present study, we investigate kernel density estimation (KDE) and its application to the Gumbel probability distribution. We introduce the basic concepts of reliability analysis and estimation in ordinary and Bayesian settings. The robustness of top three kernels used in KDE with respect to three different optimal bandwidths is presented. The parametric, Bayesian, and empirical Bayes estimates of the reliability, failure rate, and cumulative failure rate functions under the Gumbel failure model are derived and compared with the kernel density estimates. We also introduce the concept of target time subject to obtaining a specified reliability. A comparison of the Bayes estimates of the Gumbel reliability function under six different priors, including kernel density prior, is performed. A comparison of the maximum likelihood (ML) and Bayes estimates of the target time under desired reliability using the Jeffrey's non-informative prior and square error loss function is studied. In order to determine which of the two different loss functions provides a better estimate of the location parameter for the Gumbel probability distribution, we study the performance of four criteria, including the non-parametric kernel density criterion. Finally, we apply both KDE and the Gumbel probability distribution in modeling the annual extreme stream flow of the Hillsborough River, FL. We use the jackknife procedure to improve ML parameter estimates. We model quantile and return period functions both parametrically and using KDE, and show that KDE provides a better fit in the tails.