This is just an Excerpt from a larger document, click here to view the entire document.On-Going Efforts
As stated previously,AR is not new to the DoD. However, many past reforms, while encouraged, were not funded as they now are. These monies have been allocated over the next five years to assist in implementing reforms outlined by Secretary Perry. This funding has generated a number of different efforts in the R&M community to assist in helping with the transition to a more commercial and performance - based way of doing business. The US Air Force Rome Laboratory (RL) and the Reliability Information Analysis Center (RIAC) are undertaking a number of initiatives in the area of COTS/NDI usage, and in the area of standards and specifications.
In the COTS area, RL has initiated efforts to look at the impact of using Plastic Encapsulated Microcircuits (PEMs) in military applications and is sponsoring an effort being performed by the IIT Research Institute (IITRI) to develop a software tool to help compare and select COTS hardware for military applications. One effort in the PEMs area is the preparation of a handbook entitled, "Commercial Parts and Processes for Military Applications," for the Joint Tactical Information Distributed System (JTIDS) program office. This handbook contains valuable case studies and lessons learned that relate commercial products and processes to military applications involving harsh environments. See reference  for further information on RL initiatives in the PEM area.].
The COTS software tool effort is focused on the equipment level and will address such items as computers, signal processors, displays, power supplies, radio/communication systems, data storage devices and video units. A primary task of this effort is to collect and analyze data on fielded COTS equipment to determine failure histories and susceptibilities, and then to use this data to develop translation models that estimate the reliability and readiness of COTS equipment in adverse military environments.
In the area of R&M specifications, standards and documents, a joint RL/RIAC effort has resulted in the release of the popular "Reliability Toolkit: Commercial Practices Edition" . The RIAC is also developing a number of "Blueprints for Product Reliability." The RIAC Blueprints are designed for use in both the government and industry to provide guidance in the successful definition and implementation of are liability program, and address products ranging from completely new commercial consumer products to highly specialized military systems.
RL is further sponsoring the development of a new handbook on maintainability to replace MIL-STD-470 and -471, and the development of a compendium of US and international commercial and military R&M hardware standards. The maintainability handbook effort is being performed by RIAC with assistance from McDonnell Douglas and a draft is available on the RIAC's WWW homepage . The compendium provides information on a number of standards, handbooks and documents that could be considered for use in lieu of equivalent military documents. It will also contain information on standards bodies, and any on-going efforts to develop R&M standards. IITRI is also revising MIL-HDBK-338, which will consolidate valuable information contained in R&M standards that have been or are to be canceled.
As a final note, a group known as the Partnership in Reliability, Maintainability and Supportability (RMS) Standards has been
formed to ensure that the US continues to develop and maintain world class standards in the area of RMS. This group comprises professionals from government, industry and academia. The group meets on a periodic basis and publishes a newsletter that is available on the WWW . The newsletter keeps readers informed on the current issues facing RMS standardization and on current efforts to develop replacement RMS standards. Further references are provided below.