The U family of distributions: Properties and applications
Keywords:Weibull distribution, general family of distributions, moments; simulation, data analysis
In this article, we develop a new general family of distributions aimed at unifying some well-established lifetime distributions and offering new work perspectives. A special family member based on the so-called modified Weibull distribution is highlighted and studied. It differs from the competition with a very flexible hazard rate function exhibiting increasing, decreasing, constant, upside- down bathtub and bathtub shapes. This panel of shapes remains rare and particularly desirable for modeling purposes. We provide the main mathematical properties of the special distribution, such as a tractable infinite series expansion of the probability density function, moments of several kinds (raw, incomplete, probability weighted ...) with discussions on the skewness and kurtosis. The stochastic ordering structure and stress-strength parameter are also considered, as well as the basics of the order statistics. Then, an emphasis is put on the inferential features of the related model. In particular, the estimation of the model parameters is employed by the maximum likelihood method, with a simulation study to confirm the suitability of the approach. Three practical data sets are then analyzed. It is observed that the proposed model gives better fits than other well-known lifetime models derived from the Weibull model.