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NATO Codification System

NATO Codification System (NCS) is a standard approach that identifies, classifies and numbers the items of supply. This codification system applies to all those items that are continually used and stocked such as repair parts, equipment and food items among all.This codification system has been approved by all participants of the treaty and also by the non-Nato nations to be used for identifying the equipment and supplies. The purpose of this system is a unique identification and data set that is easily shared and understood by a large number of users very conveniently. This data set can be shared in form of printed catalogues, online systems, electronic data exchange etc. and used by logisticians and manufactures very efficiently.The codification process comprises of naming, classifying, describing the item and assigning it a 13 digit NATO stock number (NSN). This system helps the logistics processes and enables to supply, purchase, maintain, store, transport, plan and take care of many other tasks. Furthermore, it also enables different organizations and even countries to take part in military, disaster relief, peace keeping and other similar operations and provide logistic support.NCS Documents
There are two NATO standardization agreements (STANAGs) that make up the structural basic for this system:

  • STANAG 3150 (Uniform System of Supply Classification)
  • STANAG 3151 (Uniform System of Item of Supply Identification)
The main document of this system is the Allied Codification Publication No 1 (ACodP-1) which is also known as the NATO Manual on Codification and describes the system operating procedures.  The system is based on the United States Federal Catalogue System, and also used by the Civil Departments of some NATO nations. It is overseen by the NATO Group of National Directors on Codification (AC/135) and implemented by the National Codification Bureau (NCB) of each user nation.Basics of NCS
The basic aim of NCS is the identification of unambiguous items according to the standards of the STANAG 3151. This identification process is carried out with help of a NATO Stock Number that is made up of a 4 digit NATO Supply Classification Code, a 2 digit code for National Codification Bureau (NCB) which represents the country that codifies the item and a 7 digit non-significant number that is assigned by NCB.NCS also aims to uniform the System of Supply Classification keeping up with the STANAG 3150. All the material is classified in material groups and classes according to its logistic purposes.NCS also uniforms the System of Item Names according to the H6 manual (Item Name Directory) as there are more than 40,000 approved item names used that cover all types of material.When it comes to Item Identification, it is carried out according to the Item Identification Guide (IIG) which is based on the material technical attributes specification. Also, an item is identified on the basis of the manufacturer’s code, NCAGE and the manufacturer’s item identification number.Item of Supply
Item of supply refers to an item of production be it a part or an article which has been determined by a responsible supply management authority as a specific logistics requirement. This item of supply must be outlined in accordance with logistic requirements such as transport, usage, features etc. to entertain all the logistic requirements that might be needed for repeated usage.It is possible that one item of supply might represent several items of production which are not distinguished from the logistics point of view and requirements....