The military standard 130 regarding the unique identification code has undergone several revisions. The new UID, MIL-STD 130 specification document refers to quality standards for unique identification codes and the encoding process to be applied during UID marking.
• According to MIL-STD 130 change 1, ISO -16022 is no longer the recommended print quality for bar codes. The new version includes the ISO/IEC 15415 standard as the approved print quality for unique identification code labels. In addition, code 128 is referred to as a symbol to be ranked according to ISO-15416 specifications. It requires a ‘B’ grade as a minimum passing category.
• The changed version of the MIL-STD 130 specification document emphasizes the use of ISO-15415 on print labels. It recommends the use of a single scan to obtain the overall grade. According to the new standard, symbol contrast, and modulation grading parameters are allowed to drop to a ‘C’ grade. Exceptions were added to do this. In addition, the ‘B’ grade is determined as the minimum grade for all other parameters. Change has been made regarding the use of a 2D data matrix symbol. For instance, the range of nominal x-dimension the data matrix symbol gets changes from 7.5 mil to 25 mil. In addition, a set of new rules has been applied to the linear bar code verification. The rules specify ‘B’ as a minimum grade. The process must go with a test aperture of 5 mil and a light source of 660 nm, per ISO-15416 quality specification.
• The updated UID specifications emphasize new rules for Dot Peen, Laser, and Chemical Etched codes. This new version allows AIM-DPM-2006 quality standards for identification codes. ’C’ has been named the minimum grade with no exceptions. As for illumination, the new version permits using multiple angles. Low angle illumination requires 30 degree lighting from four sides, any of the two sides, or any of the single sides.
• ISO 15415 is recommended as the accepted standard for Dot Peen, laser or Chemical Etched codes. As for lighting wavelength, there is a change from 660 nm +/-10 nm to 640 nm +/- 20 nm.
• The new MIL-STD 130 N allows the APM-DPM specification for all marking processes. It allows diffused or off-axis illumination as a light source. Another important addition is the curved surface rule. It requires the data matrix code to contain a maximum 32 percent of the radius.
Keeping up with the changes to the UID specifications can be difficult. To ensure your products comply with the standards, you may wish to enlist the help of a service provider like www.uid2go.com, who will ensure your nameplates and labels meet the latest standards.