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NATO codification
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NATO codification

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INVESTIGATION OF THE POSSIBILITY FOR TRANSFORMATION …

INVESTIGATION OF THE POSSIBILITY FOR TRANSFORMATION
OF MNE ARMED FORCES NOMENCLATURE TO THE NATO
CODIFICATION SYSTEM

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  • 1. INVESTIGATION OF THE POSSIBILITY FOR TRANSFORMATION OF MNE ARMED FORCES NOMENCLATURE TO THE NATO CODIFICATION SYSTEM VELJKO MALIŠIĆ Ministry of Defense of Montenegro, Podgorica, veljko.malisic@mod.gov.me MARINKO ALEKSIĆ Ministry of Defense of Montenegro, Podgorica, marinko.aleksic@mod.gov.meAbstract: This work explores the possibilities of transformation of nomenclatural numbers, which are the basis ofexisting material accounting of assets in the NATO stock number system. It analyzes the current system ofnomenclature, defining the characteristics of NATO codification system and provides guidelines for translating onesystem to another. The example of program shows a possible solution for the transformation of nomenclatural numbersto NATO stock numbers. The program would be used to transform the numbers of those assets that cannot be codified inthe NATO codification system for several reasons. It is fully compatible with NATO system and provides an opportunityto expand its function by further modification.Key words: NATO, codification, nomenclature, logistics, interoperability.1. INTRODUCTION 3520-1023-0016In Montenegrin Armed Forces (MAF) there is a system of Nomenclature Number of the JNAnomenclature for material resources, inherited from theformer JNA (Jugoslovenska Narodna Armija / Yugoslav 3520 1023-0016People`s Army), which is currently in use. As an integral Classification Numberpart of information system within the logistics units, it Identification Number 35 20insured standardization, unification of items in use, (without specified meaning)management and rationalization of available resources of Group Subgroupthe logistical support. Nomenclature of the JNA assetsmeant an established system of classification and Picture 1: Structure of nomenclature numberidentification of resources, determination of nomenclaturename and nomenclature number of those goods and 1.1. Classification of assetspublishing these names and numbers. The aim was toperform a unique way of resources sorting and All assets in the system of nomenclature are classifiedidentification, provide a unique and simple way of into related groups, by various characteristics. Theunderstanding the JNA units and provide automated data classification is based on the definition of the items takenprocessing of assets. In this way, the system of - what it is and what is its purpose. The classificationnomenclature would provide the maximum operation and number indicates group and subgroup to which the fixedmaximum economic efficiency, both in the process of asset is classified. Each item that is covered by theprocurement of assets, and in the process of storage and nomenclature could be classified only in one group anddistribution thereof. subgroup. There are 99 classification groups in theEach asset that was included in the nomenclature was nomenclature system.determined by the nomenclature name and nomenclature Items of each group are sorted within the more specifiednumber of the JNA. It is a number of twelve digits, and it groups - subgroups. Each group was provided with 100consists of two parts: a classification number and an sub-groups, ranging from 00 to 99. In this way, resourcesidentification number. Nomenclature code is written in were categorized by four-digit numbers in two stages, i.e.three groups of four digits, as shown on picture 1. the groups and subgroups. For example, Group 35 - The radar and computer resources were classified into the 731
  • 2. following subgroups: compatibility of technical elements with system elements− 3500 – Radars, observation, such as NATO and EU. First of all, Interoperability requires the adoption and implementation of standards that are− 3509 – Radars, acquisition, compatible with NATO and EU standards.− 3520 – Radars, reconnaissance, Bearing in mind the fact that bigger part of military− 3576 – Computers, windings, etc. equipment is obsolete, as well as the lack of implementation of NATO doctrine and other norms in1.2. Recognition line with NATO standards (STANAG), we can say that the current level of MAF interoperability with the armedIdentification numbers included only characteristic forces of partner countries is not satisfactory. In order tofeatures of the items by which they can be distinguished achieve the required level of interoperability, Montenegroand separated from the others. A specific recognition of has planned and carried out an enhanced partnershipthe item could have been referring only to one asset goals’ program adopted through the framework of PARPcovered by the nomenclature of item and vice versa, a and MAP processes. Achieving goals requirestool included in the nomenclature could have only one commitments of partner’s adoption and implementation ofrecognition (identification). The last eight digits of the certain rules and procedures of NATO, both in MoD andnomenclature number are identification numbers. This MAF, and in other executive bodies. Achieving thenumber begins with the 0000-0000 and proceeds up to necessary level of standards adopted and applied9999-9999. Number recognition is totally independent of according to the capacity of Montenegro and requiresthe number of classification. The basis for recognition is time to implement them. It can be said that the partnershippermanent parameter of an identification item: goal that provides acceptance of NATO codification− Nomenclature name item (one word – a noun or more system, also insures achieving interoperability in several words, that conceptually determines item), the rule was directions and that is why we could say that the needs for determined by the Yugoslav standard (JUS), involvement of the NCS are multiple.− Designation of item (number, letter or letter-number, The obligation of every military logistics system all over brand, type, model, factory number, drawing number, the world, including the MAF, is to maintain and develop label of the standard...), capability to provide complete and continuous logistics support elements of the armed forces at home and abroad.− Designation of manufacturer (a special four-digit number from 0001 to 9999), The logistics system should provide logistical support to the national and collective defense, ensuring the execution− Photography, drawing or sketch. of all tasks in peace and war. Euro-Atlantic integration and membership in the program "Partnership for Peace",1.3. The conclusion for the current system for logistic cooperation, demand full acceptance of the NATO codification. Logistic cooperation within NATO is− The system was fully operational in the country that no based on the fact that it can communicate on a single longer exists, standard language in the field of material transactions.− Now we are using only the existing nomenclature The NATO codification system – NCS is tool that numbers and directories, develops the ability to ensure logistical support for units− There is no authority that can be trained on this system - MAF addressed to the international operations, and codification assigns a new nomenclatural numbers, provide logistical support for units of MAF in NATO, UN− There is no a software package for the codification on or EU-led operations. Acceptance of the NATO that system, codification concept is very important activity for countries aspiring to cooperation with NATO in the field− Publications are made in the form of printed books, and of logistics, in order to ensure interoperability and do not exist in electronic media, efficiency of logistics support.− The system is operated only within a national Cooperative logistics within NATO is based on the fact framework - it is not compatible with NATO NCS, that armed forces can communicate with one standard− Groups and subgroups of JNA nomenclature are only language in the field of management of material partially equivalent to NATO groups and classes of NCS, resources. And the concept of codification creates the− Condition of storage is available in electronic form, common language using NATO Stock Number - NSN.− The system was scientifically based and it is a good NATO Codification is actually a unique system of basis for conversion to a new system. identification, classification and labeling of material resources. Based on the U.S. Federal catalog system, in2. NATO CODIFICATION SYSTEM (NCS) AS the NATO it had been introduced on the basis of two A TOOL FOR INTEROPERABILITY STANAG agreements: STANAG 3150 - uniform system of classification of assets and STANAG 3151 - a uniqueThe optimal level of interoperability is certainly one of the identification system resources. Standards that are also inkey prerequisites for MAF units to properly function, within use for codification are: STANAG 4177: The system ofthe system of collective security. This includes both data collection, and STANAG 4438: The system of datastructural and procedural interoperability of MAF, as well as transfer. 732
  • 3. 2.1. Structure of the NATO Codification Number Partnership for Peace member countries, which, however, struggled to acquire to members of their armed forces theIn the process of codification there are two basic rules knowledge of at least one of them.applied: NATO codification system is a tool through which the− Each item of supply - tool has a unique number, NSN gives possibility to the people, no matter what languages speak, to understand, and thus ensure the (ONE ITEM – ONE NUMBER) functioning of the unit and the funds in a multinational− National Codification Bureau - NCB, of nation that environment. produces the item, codified item, regardless of who uses The optimal level of interoperability is one of the key the item-tool. This applies even if the producing nation prerequisites for the functioning of MAF within the does not use the item. system of collective defense. This includes structural,NATO Stock Number - NSN consists of thirteen digits, procedural and technical interoperability elements of theand is divided into three parts: first part - the four digits, defense system of Montenegro with elements of thethe second part - two digits and the third part - seven defense system of NATO. Interoperability requires thedigits, as shown in picture 2. adoption and implementation of standards, compatible with those of NATO and the EU. The NATO alliance as it 1005-13-123- 4567 is, the concept of interoperability is of primary importance and should be applied in all areas of NATO NATO Stock Number (NSN) activity. The existing level of MAF interoperability with the armed 1005 13 123- 4567 forces of partner countries and future allies is not NATO NATO Code for satisfactory, given the outdated military equipment and Supply National Non-Significant techniques, and insufficient implementation ofClassification Codification Number procedures, doctrine and regulations in accordance withCode ( NSC ) Bureau (NCB) NATO standards (STANAG). The system of standardization in the MOD and MAF is in the process of 13-123- 4567 defining and will be fully compliant with NATO NATO Item Identification Number standardization system. This creates prerequisites for the (NIIN) systematic adoption and implementation of standards on which is possible to base the development and functioning Picture 2: Structure of NATO Stock Number of the defense system of Montenegro.The first two digits define the group of assets in which is The present trend of globalization on the world wide,the item of supply. The third and fourth digits define class imposes a need for any company, for purely economicof item, together with the first two digits which are reasons, to get their NATO code. Otherwise, without it,determined by the item – what it is the purpose and the economic cooperation with the users of NCS isitem used to identify items in groups and classes. impossible, ie. it is impossible to participate in the market of the NATO and EU countries.The fifth and sixth digits indicate the country code of theproducts manufacturer. Apart from the NATO members, 2.2. The advantages of NATO codification systemthere are numbers of countries which are engaged inproduction and trade of weapons and military equipment NATO codification system as an integral part of thefor NATO. operating supply around the world provides many significant advantages to NATO countries and countriesSo, every part of the NSN has its special meaning, and if that are not in the alliance. It especially stresses theviewed as an independent part has its name. The structure importance and advantages of the participants in theof an NSN number is shown on picture 2. commercial sector outside the defense community.Structurally, we can say that there is similarity in relation All the advantages mentioned provide that the system canto the number of nomenclature, but only one part is be classified into two groups: operational and economic.compatible. The most of the groups and classes is notcompatible with the NSN. When we talk about the operational benefits of NCS, those are, above all:One part of the groups and classes is completely identicalin both numbers. "An eight-digit identification number of − Increased opportunities for standardization,nomenclature number is replaced with a seven-digitnumber with no particular interest in NSN". Double-digit − The exact codification of items of supply. Spare parts"NATO country code" is what the two numbers differ in. and other resources can be used for various equipment and systems,The official languages of NATO, and therefore in the"Partnership for Peace" program - PfP are English and − A precise description of each item allows the user toFrench. However, the fact is that not all members from all quickly find the equipment that meets the requirementsparticipating countries of peacekeeping missions, know for timely replacement,one of these two languages. This is especially true of the 733
  • 4. − The existence of a universal language between the users be automatically determined. Picture 3 shows the front provides a simpler technical dialogue, page of the program. The name of the program is composed of two letters of key words that are the essence− Description of items, which are already in the system, of this program, transformation and codification. Besides allows designers and engineers a precise search and the option to run the program, on the front page, the selection of components or equipment in accordance toolbar for the data is the direct choice of options such as with their technical or functional characteristics more NB MAF, NSN NATO, verification, transformation and effectively than any other commercial directory. so on. Any of these options could be running also in theThe economic benefits include: program.− NCS database allows visibility of items that are already codified and ensures prevention of re-entering the same items,− Effective use of resources provides the opportunity, if necessary, to support interchangeability between procurement organizations and even among countries,− Decrease in inventories, storage facilities and personnel by eliminating the duplication or multiplication of the same item (same item on file under a different name), and record keeping is easier,− Reduced downtime and support cross networking of different services and countries,− Reduced procurement costs by consolidating purchases, Picture 3 Front page of “TRANSCOD” preferring rarer buying in bulk. By clicking "POKRENI" („RUN“) it opens the control panel program in which there are two windows, as shown3. POSSIBILITY OF TRANSFORMATION OF in picture 4. MAF NOMENCLATURE NUMBER TO NSNThe concept of codification in MoD and MAF will be todetermine priorities for the codification of assets. It isknown that among the assets which are currently in use,there are several different groups in terms of codification(assets that will be codified - perspective, the assets will notbe codified - non-perspective etc.). However, there areassets that are perspective and needed, but cannot becodified. These are assets that were not produced inMontenegro, and country of the manufacturer did notcodify it. The level of Tier 1 in which Montenegro in theNCS does not allow the codification of assets produced inanother country. In addition, the existing nomenclaturesystem has its disadvantages. There is no possibility ofassigning new nomenclature numbers to outdated Picture 4 Dashboard of “TRANSCOD” applicationequipment, and it is more difficult to maintain the system.This requires the development of alternative programs thatwill eventually replace the system of nomenclature andmaintain financial accounting of assets that are not in theNATO codification system. The program would be usedfor internal purposes in order to be fully compliant with theNCS and the numbers would be allocated in the same way.All numbers assigned in the NCS would be entered into adatabase for future internal codification system.With the aim to respond to these requests program"TRANSCOD" has been developed for MoD and MAF.Structure of codification number that will be done to the Picture 5 NATO Nomenclature Groupsprogram is identical with the NSN. Groups and classeshave been transferred from NATO classification, a Window "UNOS-OBRADA PODATAKA" is intended tonumber of countries will still be 77 - in Montenegro. perform operations of transformation; windowNumber of no particular importance also has 7 digits and "PREGLED - ŠTAMPA" is designed to come directly toNSN. It could have been different, with fewer or more the desired data at any time. On the dashboard was givendigits. However, in order to achieve full compatibility the option of direct entry to the database assets group,with the NSN, the solution will have seven digits and will picture 5. 734
  • 5. database, we return to a menu entry nomenclature number and type of data associated with it. Given the hundreds of thousands of nomenclatural number in the current system, it is expected that in the initial period is often used option of input of nomenclature number. After selecting the number you want to transform, and verify basic information, on the right side of the screen is a window that is designed to confirm the transformation, picture 9. After confirming that we want to complete such a transformation, "Checking" field to determine "the number of no particular significance" in the codification number and date of recording transformation. "The number of no particular significance" is growing, starting Picture 6 Subgroups of the nomenclature system with 0000001 and allotter automatically. "Checking" field, the number is reserved and can not be undone, butSubgroups of nomenclatural numbers - picture 6 or in the event of a fault may change the item to which heclasses of NATO numbers - picture 7. The user of would assign. Confirmation of transformation andprogram has the ability to enter new group and a new sub- clicking on the button "ZATVORI", the program informsgroup or class of assets, at any time if needed. the operator window "INFORMACIJA OPERATORU" with the recommendation of what follows after transformation and confirmed what to do in the next step. Picture 7- NCS system classesIt is expected that the groups and subgroups in thenomenclature which first appear in the request fortransformation in NSN, assign the appropriate group and Picture 9 - „Checking” of transformation in the NB toclass by NATO. The program allows you to precisely NSN transformation windowthese steps. Returning to the control panel and selecting the program option "PREGLED NSN - NATO SKLADIŠNI BROJ", which show all the assigned NSN, obtained through transformation nomenclature number. Picture 8 - NB to NSN transformation dialog windowTransformation procedure required nomenclature numberbegins by selecting the number of "TRANSFORMACIJA Picture 10- NB MAF check/control windowNB u NSN" on the dashboard. After opening a dialoguewindow for the transformation, picture 8, we perform a In order to simplify the operators work on this program,choice of either entering the nomenclature number you made option "KONTROLA EVIDENCIJE NB VCG Uwant transformed. If the database exists nomenclature BAZI PODATAKA", which provides the ability tocode that we want to transform, select it by clicking the automatically check whether a code number by nowmouse and get basic information about the asset (name transformed into NSN or not. Selecting this option opens aand brief description). If the number does not exist in the window for dialogue and after entering the nomenclature 735
  • 6. number that we can get to check one of three possible The system inherited from the former state has someanswers. The first is as in picture 10, the required code features of this system; it can be said of some similarities,number does not exist database. Another is that the number and even an identity. But also the limitations that suggesthas not been transformed, and the third that the that accepting of NCS are justified. In parallel with thetransformations of nomenclature number already effected. NCS, the existing system of nomenclature will be in use. It will eventually change all over with a new nationalThe program provides some options such as updating the program to track material resources. Presented programMember States NCS, changes transformed the number of meets the needs of the MoD and MAF and is a gooderror, using different units of measure, if necessary, etc. solution for the gradual conversion from displacement to a new system, compatible with NATO systems. Also, it4. CONCLUSION remains open to future modifications and extensions, if necessary.NCS is an integral part of the supply in the world. Itprovides accurate information about the characteristics ofmillion of assets - items of supply. It contains answers to Referencesquestions regarding procurement of material resources, [1] Mališić, V.: Istraživanje mogućnosti transformacijequestions about resource management; logistics helps in nomenklature sredstava VCG na NATO kodifikacionimaintaining the functions and contains information that system, Magistarski rad, Ekonomski fakultet,provides for the possibility of making available. It also Podgorica, 2012.simplifies the problem of procurement and management [2] Aleksić, M.: Informacija: NATO kodifikacioni sisteminformation on procurement by providing quick response NCS kao sredstvo za dostizanje interoperabilnostito a constantly updated source. Vojske Crne Gore, Ministarstvo odbrane Crne Gore,NCS offers many significant advantages to NATO Sektor za materijalne resurse, Odsijek zacountries and those outside of NATO, and also standardizaciju i kodifikaciju, Podgorica, 2009participants from the private sector that is outside of the [3] Aleksić, M., Mališić, V.: Uvođenje NATOdefense community. The current trend of globalization in kodifikacionog sistema u Vojsku Crne Gore,world scale is simply a need for any company that wants Konferencija održavanja KOD, Tivat, 2009.to survive in the market and be profitable; it must apply to [4] Guide to the NATO Codification System AC 135,join the NCS. In particular, it relates to the defense NATO Group of National Directors on Codificationindustry to remain in line with developments in their field AC/135, Capellen, 2000.and provide logistics to reach the required level ofinteroperability. It is obvious that the reasons for the [5] ACodP-1, NAMSA, Codification Services Branch,acceptance of the NCS, primarily economic in nature. Capellen.Without participation in system there is no cooperation [6] NATO Codification System, NAMSA, Codificationwith users of NCS. Services Branch, Capellen. 736

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