Friday, September 24, 2010

The Importance of MIL-STD-130N UID Images

The US Department of Defense in a quest to improve efficiency and provide better logistical support developed the MIL-STD-130 specification to identify every single item used by the US Military. The MIL-STD-130 has undergone several revisions and is now on version MIL-STD-130N. This specification mandates the use of a unique identifier called a UID on each item provided to the US military. These UID images must be scannable through the use of a UID scanner .

Per MIL-STD-130N, the UID consists of a 2D data matrix conforming to ISO 15434. Utilizing a 2D data matrix, identifying matrices can range in size from 300 micrometers to over 1 meter in size depending on the application. Like the QR codes popular on the web, 2D data matrices can contain up to 2kb of data and are not human readable. In order to read a UID image, you need to utilize a UID scanner .

The versatility of 2D data matrices is an important reason why the DOD adopted their use. Since the only way to read MIL-STD-130N images is through the use of a UID scanner , it's important to ensure that UID images created and put on items are within tight tolerances and well affixed. This is due to the fact that many different types of UID scanners are used in both the warehouse and the field. Whether a desktop UID scanner is used, a handheld portable UID scanner is used, or even a smartphone acting as a UID scanner is used, the data contained in the UID image must be accessible at all times.

While the US Department of Defense has made exceptions to UID labeling for certain items such as vehicles, these exceptions are slowly disappearing. More and more products in even the consumer market are including MIL Spec 130 compliant labels. A standard identification system for products is just smart business.

The importance of UID images cannot be overstated. Without a properly created UID image scannable by a UID scanner , the US Department of Defense can and will reject item shipments, but more than that, improperly created MIL-SPEC 130 labels can keep badly needed supplies from US soldiers in the field. While it can difficult to fully understand and implement the MIL-STD-130N specifications, it's easy to get to help understanding them and implementing them from the MIL-STD-130N experts at ID-Integration.

Meeting UID Compliance

If you are a manufacturer with a Department of Defense (DOD) contract you must meet the minimum requirements of MIL STD 130N enacted on December 17, 2007. Part of this standard is dfars 252.211-7003(Item Identification and Valuation.) Dfars 252.211-7003 requires products to be UID (Unique Identifier) compliant. The purpose of this document is to give you a brief overview of UID compliance and provide a resource to help you to understand and meet these requirements. (For a comprehensive explanation see

UID COMPLIANCE MIL STD 130N dfars 252.211-7003

The UID is a system unique and unambiguous identifiers to distinguish a an item from all other like and unlike items.

Marking specifications of dfars 252.211-7003 for UID compliance for items procured by the DOD require:

1. A two dimensional Data Matrix with machine-readable data elements of the UID marked on all items. The data elements of the UID include: the enterprise identifier (a code that is uniquely assigned to a manufacture or vender); the part number; the lot or batch number; and the serial number.

2. A metal or stiff plastic identification plate, identification band, identification tag, or identification label containing the UID securely fastened to the item or applied directly to the surface of the item itself.

3. Placed in a location where it will be visible and easily read during normal operation and use of the item if possible.

4. Permanent throughout the entire life expectancy of the item and can withstand normal environmental conditions; including cleaning and rebuilding.

In order to meet the dfars 252.211-7003 specifications you need a way to mark your product and a way to read the markings. Marking the UID may be done by dot peen, ink jet, laser etching or chemical etching. A number of scanners are available to read the markings. Your scanner must be able to read the 2D data and validate the UID.

Talk to the experts at ID-Integration for more information on the complicated subject of dfars 252.211-7003 ,UID compliance and for help finding the right marking system and scanner to meet your needs. Go to; email

Department of Defense Mandates All Inventory Purchases Over $5k Carry a UID

In December of 2007 the Department of Defense (DoD) issued its revised Standard Practice Identification System for Marking of US Military Property commonly referred to as mil std 130, applicable to all suppliers of items to the DoD. It had been estimated at one point that the military had lost over $2 billion because of inadequate inventory control. Mil std 130 mandates that suppliers mark each and every item with a unique identification system or uid . The uid is basically a two-dimensional matrix bar code that must include a serial number, a part number and a CAGE code (Commercial and Government Entity Code), In addition, the uid has to include the supplier's Personal Identification Number (PIN), as well as the purchase order number, and contract number.

Mil std 129 Outlines DoD uid Standards for Shipping Containers.

To further streamline the process, the DoD also requires that the shipping containers be marked with a code and these requirements are outlined in MIL STD129. These markings simplify the work of military personnel in managing inventory. According to mil std 129 , shipping containers can be categorized into three types, unit containers, intermediate containers and exterior containers. For all containers, the shipper must include the National Stock Number (NSN), item description and part number. For exterior containers, mil std 129 specifies additional labels such as Military Shipment Level (MSL), serial number bar code and Direct-Vendor Delivery level (DVD). This uid code must be readable by both humans and bar code scanners. Both mil std 129 and mil std 130 spell out many additional refinements and specifications. Most business find that they need outside help to achieve complete compliance.

Hiring Experts To Insure Compliance Is The Smart Choice.

ID-Integration specializes in helping businesses be mil std 129 and mil std 130 compliant. With 12 years of experience, the experts at ID-Integration help their customers avoid costly and time consuming mistakes in complying with these complicated but very important DoD requirements. And ID-Integration is a complete source, providing both information and a complete product line. Not only do they offer an assortment of marking equipment--laser, dot peen, chemical etch, and ink jet, but they also carry a variety of imagers, scanners and verification systems. ID-Integration has the answers and the hardware to make any business uid compliant.

Being UID Compliant Is Essential In Business?

The Department of Defense has mandated that all contracts, property, property in the possession of contractors, and any deliverable items be marked with a unique serialized identification number. This identification number is required to meet MIL-STD-130 standards and is called UID or unique identification code. The UID is essentially a two-dimensional, matrix bar-code symbol where data is scanned and interpreted into three major parts such as Serial Number, Part Number and CAGE Code (Commercial and Government Entity Code). This unique number is used by the DoD for tracking purposes and to manage all the assets at its disposal.

Just What Are MIL-STD-130 Standards?

MIL-STD-130 lays out the standard wherein all government furnished property must be marked with a machine readable (MRI) 2D matrix bar code. Whatever material is selected for the UID , it must be a permanent label solution. The supplier can choose to use a durable polyester label, aluminum, stainless steel, or laser-marked adhesive-backed tape; however, the bar code must meet printing or marking specifications.

Adhering to MIL-STD-130 Standards Requires Expertise

It is essential that product engineers adhere to the criteria set by the MIL-STD-130 standard. Simply defining the product in accordance with the standard is not enough. The product designers have to take every aspect of their end product into consideration to satisfy the criteria. This process starts with the geographic location of the product, includes size of the product, and so on. Each item should also have a Personal Identification number (PIN) marked with the supplier's name and show the purchase order number and the contract number. This is a very sophisticated and complex process and requires the help of experts in the field.

Id-Integration Is An Expert In Applying MIL-STD-130 Standards.

When dealing with UID standards, it is not only wise but cost effective to hire experts. ID-Integration specilizies in ensuring that your company and all products you sell are in accordance with MIL-STD-130 standards. They also provide UID compliant scanners which make it even easier to insure that the right code is employed and lessens the chance of human error. These scanners provide fast, reliable readings and quickly identify codes which are not in compliance. Helping business be UID compliant is the sole aim of the experts at ID-Integration.