What is a UID Marking System?
The United States Department of Defense regulated a certain marking system for all equipments and parts. This was required in order to track such products with a unique identification code. This code is known throughout the military industry as a UID marking, or a unique identification mark.
Compliance with military standards is an essential part of business for any company serving the U.S. Defense Department. All qualifying contracted parts or products must also be registered for full compliance. Products that are manufactured, released, or stored with the U.S. military must have this unique identification code or suffer canceled contracts.
UID marking is very important. This depth of identification enables the military to execute fast tracking of necessary products and parts, enables improved maintenance recording, better asset management, and even quick restoration of failed or serviced equipment in need of critical parts. Because this tracking is completed from cradle to grave, it's imperative that UID marking labels remain legible and permanent for a product or part's complete life cycle. Integration experts recommend durable and proven marking technologies, like laser direct part marking, thermal transfer label printers, and dot peen indenting systems.
However it is important to understand that not all products will require UID marking. The requirements of products that must possess these unique identification labels are categorized by the DoD in MIL STD 130 and MIL STD 129. Both MIL STD 130 and MIL STD 129 contain detailed guidelines, which all contractors serving the Department of Defense are required to follow.
How is MIL SPEC 130 Different from MIL-STD-129
Role of MIL STD 130 in UID Marking Solutions
UID 101 Basics: Discusses the history of UID regulations, the benefits to the Department of Defense, and includes a brief explanation of a 2-D marking code.
AS 9132/SAE 9132
The International Aerospace Quality Group (IAQG) developed a standard for governing the application of Data Matrix marks by various Direct Part Marking (DPM) techniques including Dot Peen, Laser Etch and Chemical Etching. This standard is maintained in the Americas by the SAE and is known as SAE AS9132. The standard is available at: http://www.iaqg.sae.org/servlets/productDetail?PROD_TYP=STD&PROD_CD=AS9132A.
Item Identification and Valuation. DoD unique item identification means a system of marking items delivered to DoD with unique item identifiers that have machine-readable data elements to distinguish an item from all other like and unlike items. For items that are serialized within the enterprise identifier, the unique item identifier shall include the data elements of the enterprise identifier and a unique serial number. For items that are serialized within the part, lot, or batch number within the enterprise identifier, the unique item identifier shall include the data elements of the enterprise identifier; the original part, lot, or batch number; and the serial number.