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    What certificates should defense nameplate manufacturers have?

    December 1 '20


    Defense and military organizations can choose from many different nameplates and labels providers. However, not every manufacturer is qualified to deliver nameplates for defense applications. And when choosing the wrong manufacturer, you might put your company and users at risk.

    Many OEMs and military organizations have to address certain standards for the types of materials they use for labeling their parts. For example, airspace applications often require their labels to be made from materials that are lightweight and durable.  

    How to know whether a manufacturer can be trusted with components for applications in the defense industry? Holding the appropriate certifications is always a sign of quality. That’s why it’s a good idea to ensure that your supplier is certified to any military or commercial specification that your application needs to meet.

    A good example of such certification is AS9100D. Read on to find out what it is and why it’s so important for defense companies. 

    What is AS9100D?

    AS9100D is a company-level certification based on a standard from the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) entitled “Quality Management Systems – Requirements for Aviation, Space and Defense Organizations”. Note that this standard revises the previous issue (called AS9100C).

    This certification is issued to organizations that do business in the aerospace industry. It’s for manufacturers, contractors, and suppliers who deliver parts such as labels, barcodes, and nameplates to this sector, which partially overlaps with military specifications. 

    The requirements of AS9100D emphasize the prevention of risk and counterfeit parts. It provides companies with a structure that enables businesses to keep up with changes, plan for obsolescence, and match product safety concerns. 

    Such certifications are issued by specialized third-party certifying bodies. An organization wishing to maintain its AS9100D certification is subjected to annual (or other regularly scheduled) audits. During an audit, the company’s compliance with the standard is evaluated by the certifying body.


    MIL-SPEC is not a type of certification, but it’s worth mentioning in relation to components for defense industry applications. The U.S. military standardizes a great number of components. Standardization improves the reliability and compatibility between systems. That way, defense organizations can ensure that their products meet certain requirements and interoperability in defense-related objectives. 

    Some other formal terms used aside from MIL-SPEC are:

    • MIL-STD (defense standard)
    • MIL-DTL (defense detail spec)
    • MIL-PRF (defense performance spec)

    Melrose Nameplates holds the AS9100D certification and is MIL-SPEC-compliant

    We hold the AS9100D certification and are compliant with MIL-SPEC (defense specification). This is a default expectation for the nameplate and label manufacturers in the defense system. Our customers include General Dynamics, Boeing, SpaceX, the U.S. Navy, DRS, and more. 

    Thanks to our dedication to the continuous improvement of our processes, decision-making quality, and employee engagement, we have successfully held the AS9100D certification for many years. 

    Our customers serve markets such as space systems, aircraft data collection, ordnance, and tactical systems, and satellite and asset deployment.


    Melrose Nameplates is a recognized provider of labels and nameplates solutions for the aviation, space, and defense industries. Our engineering experience allowed us to build long-term relationships with our customers and attract new clients who are looking for excellent value.

    Reach out to us if you’re in search of an experienced nameplate and label manufacturer that holds the right certifications. Melrose Nameplates is ready to address the most demanding requirements of your project.