Diminishing Manufacturing Sources and Material Shortages (DMSMS) is the loss or impending loss of manufacturers or suppliers of critical items and raw materials due to production discontinuance. DMSMS is an increasingly difficult problem for DoD weapon systems because the manufacturing lives of many critical items get shorter while the life cycles of military weapon systems keep increasing. Traditionally, efforts to mitigate the effects of DMSMS have been reactive; that is, the effects are addressed only when they are seen. This reactive approach to DMSMS solutions leads to decisions that put a premium on faster solution paths with attractive short-term gains in order to avoid system inoperability, while ignoring the long-term solution paths that would lead to generic families of solutions or larger-scale solutions with the capability of avoiding future DMSMS issues. In order to solve DMSMS issues with lower overall cost, DMSMS solutions must change from reactive to proactive. The building blocks of effective proactive management of DMSMS are established during the design and development of systems. If systems are designed with the inevitability of DMSMS in mind, early solution paths with largescale solutions can be started at an appropriately early time to enable intelligent choices without the imminent threat of system inoperability. Such generic large-scale solutions and a consensus on where DMSMS threats are most prevalent can be better forecasted by the use of a standard set of DMSMS management practices used by the foremost members of industry. The creation, dissemination, and widespread use of such a standard can greatly help the cause of proactive management of DMSMS.
This guideline presents a set of management practices that can be used by original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) during the design and development of military electronic systems to mitigate the effects of DMSMS. Such practices will help future builders and modifiers of DoD weapon systems to design proactively to address the issues of future component obsolescence.