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Defense Logistics: Information on the Test and Evaluation and Assignment and Cancellation of National Stock Numbers as It Relates to MILITEC-1

GAO-09-735R Published: Jun 25, 2009. Publicly Released: Jun 25, 2009.
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The purpose of this letter is to respond to Congressional request for information regarding the test and evaluation process conducted by the Department of Defense (DOD) of a specific synthetic lubricant called MILITEC-1 that is produced by Militec, Inc., and the assignment and cancellation of national stock numbers2 (NSN) associated with that product. Militec, Inc., has challenged DOD decisions not to include MILITEC-1 in the federal supply system. Specifically, we examined (1) the extent to which the military services have tested and evaluated MILITEC-1 as a small arms lubricant, as a metal conditioner, as a general purpose lubricant, and as a lubricant additive, and with what results; and (2) the extent to which the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) followed applicable DOD procedures in assigning and subsequently canceling national stock numbers to MILITEC-1. In addition, we are providing in enclosure I a timeline on the efforts to test and evaluate, and assign and cancel, NSNs for MILITEC-1. MILITEC-1 is a dry, impregnated, synthetic-based metal conditioner that, at the time of our review, has been primarily marketed as a small arms lubricant, although it is also marketed as an automotive and transportation lubricant. The product is packaged in several container sizes and is available for commercial purchase. According to DOD officials, in order for a product to be approved for use on small arms it must fulfill DOD's performance specifications by meeting a number of laboratory and live fire test requirements developed by the Army, which has cognizance across DOD for the specification for cleaner, lubricant, and preservative properties in small arms lubricants. Once a product has been approved and the services have determined that they have sufficient projected demand for the product, the services request that DLA assign the product an NSN---a label assigned to items that are repeatedly purchased, stocked, stored, issued, and used throughout the federal supply system.

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