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UMS » Glossary


Industry Terms

IAQG International Aerospace Quality Group

UID Unique Identification (now known as IUID)

AIAG Automotive Industry Action Group

DPM Direct Part number

DoD Department of Defense

MFR Manufacturer Code

PNR Current part number


Marking Technology Terms

Electrochemical marking process A low voltage current is passed between a marking head and the component, using a conductive liquid (electrolyte)as the contact medium and a stencil carries the image to be marked.  The metal is etched away from the defined area without stressing or deforming the surrounding metal, so that marks can be applied to critical components. 

Oxide mark This is normally a black mark achieved using the electrochemical process which is just a few microns thick on the surface of the component.

Etch mark The electrolytic action removes a small amount of metal to give an etched appearance.  Suitable for most metals including brass and aluminium.

Electrolyte These are water based solutions with some chemical addition that together with a low voltage electrical supply cause the marking process.

Neutraliser This is a solution that is applied after marking to restore the pH level to neutral.  Solution or handy “Neutrawipes” available.  Not all metals require neutralising.

Post marking treatment This can be neutralising or cleaning the component after marking.

Stencil This is the material that holds the impression of the image that is to be marked onto the component. There are several stencil technologies: Instant disposable stencils, Long life photographic and die impression.

Felt pad This is a pad that is between the stencil and the marking face of the marking head.  It is used to hold the electrolyte solution and to cushion the stencil.

Marking Head These are carbon or stainless electrodes which receive the low voltage current from the marking unit and are depressed on the stencil to create the mark.

Artwork This is the image that is used to make a photographic long life stencil.

Data Matrix This is a 2 dimensional barcode that can hold a great deal more information than a traditional barcode.  It can allow lifetime traceability of a component.  A camera reader is required to read the mark.

Plate This is a photographic positive of the stencil.  It has the final artwork image and any guidelines for making the stencil.  Each plate has a unique reference number that is given to the customer for re-order purposes.

Print on Demand These are instant disposable stencils ideal for variable information and used in conjunction with PC software and output via a thermal printer.