AS9100 certification is required to be a plating supplier for the Aerospace and Defense Industry. AS9100 includes the requirements of ISO 9001 but has added requirements specific to the Aerospace and Defense industry such as Counterfeit Part, Critical Items, Key Characteristic, Product Safety, & Special Requirements. The focused intensity of AS9100 is to provide consistently satisfied customers. As with all international standards, the customer’s requirements take precedence over the standard itself.

AS9100 has been created by top aerospace and defense engineers from around globe. These engineers are provided to the team by OEMs such as Boeing, Airbus, Honeywell, Northrup Grumman, Rolls Royce, and BAE, along with some far smaller companies. It is in the best interest of these companies to ensure the resulting products are both cost effective and manufactured to the highest standards.

In addition to certifying to AS9100, plating companies that service aerospace and defense are asked to acquire accreditation to Nadcap standards applicable to their processes. Nadcap is only offered through the Performance Review Institute (PRI), which is the registrar branch of SAE International (formerly known as the Society of Automotive Engineers). Although the AS9100 International Standard is applicable to every type of industry across the globe, the same is not true for Nadcap. AS9100 auditors specialize in generic quality management systems based on quality principles. Nadcap is “Process Type” specific.

Nadcap auditors are experts in the processes and products manufactured by the processes they are assigned to audit. A company must already hold an AS9100 or its Nadcap equivalent AC7004 certificate to apply for accreditation to a Nadcap standard. Nadcap auditors work with OEM engineers to identify all known process defects and the corrective actions to eliminate these issues. Each requirement noted in a Nadcap standard is there to prevent potential product defects. Nadcap auditors must have a minimum of 5 years’ experience in the commodity they will be auditing. The specific commodities fall under one of the Nadcap Task Groups listed here: Aero Structure Assembly, Aerospace Quality System, Chemical Processing, Coatings, Composites, Conventional Machining as a Special Process, Elastomer Seals, Electronics, Fluid Distribution Systems, Heat Treating, Materials Testing Laboratories, Metallic Materials Manufacturing, Nonconventional Machining, Non-Destructive Testing, Non Metallic Materials Manufacturing, Non Metallic Materials Testing, Sealants, Surface Enhancement, & Welding.

As a precious metal plater, AEP is accredited under the Chemical Processing Task Group to these specific Nadcap standards; AC7108, Chemical Processing, AC7108/4 Solution Analysis and Testing in Support of Chemical Processing AC7108, AC7108/9, Electroplating and Electroforming, AC7108/10, Electroless Plating. The Chemical Processing Task Group has a total of 14 different commodity specific standards that it audits.

Further information on Nadcap and their audits can be found at The PRI Nadcap website