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Help For Small Manufacturers in Checking Y2K Compliance in Factory-Floor Equipment

Small manufacturers will find it easier to determine whether embedded devices in factory-floor systems have a year 2000 date problem thanks to a recently formed partnership between centers in the Manufacturing Extension Partnership’s nationwide network and TAVA Technologies, Inc.

A program of the Commerce Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology, MEP centers provide business and technical assistance to smaller manufacturers in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.

Under an agreement signed last week by the Modernization Forum and TAVA, MEP centers will have access to TAVA’s Plant Y2kOne product suite and extensive database of Y2K compliance information on factory-floor automation equipment. The agreement also provides for training of MEP center field staff on TAVA’s product suite and methods for assessing Y2K problems on the plant floor.

Some examples of factory automation systems with embedded devices that may have a Y2K problem include programmable logic controllers, bar coding systems, environmental management systems and conveyor control systems that could malfunction and prohibit the execution of scheduled production.

"There is growing demand from MEP’s small manufacturing clients for information on whether their factory floor systems will have Y2K problems," said Kevin Carr, director of the NIST MEP. "We’re grateful to the Modernization Forum and to TAVA for this agreement that will allow MEP centers to quickly access Y2K compliance data and determine their clients’ level of exposure to the Y2K problem," he said.

"We are very pleased to be a part of this MEP effort to reach small and medium-sized manufacturing concerns. The year 2000 readiness of this segment of the manufacturing industry clearly is critical to a smooth millennium transition for all of the industry," said John Jenkins, chief executive officer of TAVA Technologies.

Through its nationwide network of centers and offices, NIST MEP also is offering seminars and a computer-based tool to help small manufacturers better understand and deal with the year 2000 date problem. MEP’s computer-based tool—called Conversion 2000: Y2K Self-Help Tool—will help small manufacturers conduct an inventory of equipment, including hardware, software and embedded systems; identify core business systems and rate their importance to the survival of the business; develop contingency plans; and plan and manage remediation projects.

For assistance with the year 2000 problem, as well as other business and technical projects, small manufacturers can call 1-800-MEP-4MFG (637-4634) to reach the MEP center serving their region. MEP’s World Wide Web site,, also has information on the year 2000 problem.

As a non-regulatory agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce's Technology Administration, NIST promotes economic growth by working with industry to develop and apply technology, measurements and standards through four partnerships: the Measurement and Standards Laboratories, the Advanced Technology Program, the Manufacturing Extension Partnership and the Baldrige National Quality Program.

TAVA Technologies has been a leading independent provider of information and automation technology solutions to process and manufacturing industries for more than 20 years. The Modernization Forum is the association for America’s manufacturing extension community.

Contacts: TAVA Technologies, Inc., John Jenkins (CEO), (303) 771-9794 ext. 103 and Scott Liolios (Pacific Consulting Group), (949) 574-3860; Modernization Forum, Deb Hoffman, (313) 271-2790

Released November 5, 1998, Updated November 27, 2017