Headquarters Space and Missile Systems Center (AMFC)

Los Angeles Air Force Base, California 90009-2960

Acquisition Management

Independent Pedigree Reviews

This regulation establishes policy and procedures and assigns responsibilities for assessing the flightworthiness of critical SMC space system hardware elements by means of independent pedigree reviews.

1. POLICY. All SMC program offices shall, at appropriate points in time, verify the readiness of their flight hardware acquisitions for continued fabrication, systems integration, or flight. As part of this effort, each program office shall obtain independent pedigree reviews of the contractor and subcontractor provided component level and vehicle level data packages. Data package content is described in MIL-STD-1586A, "Quality Program Requirements for Space and Launch Vehicles," Paragraph 4.2.5, Records.

2. BACKGROUND. Experience has shown that independent pedigree reviews have been effective in identifying problems in the manufacturing, assembly, and test history of flight hardware that could have led to launch failures or degraded on-orbit system performance. First production articles deserve special emphasis with respect to their qualification analysis and test history. Program offices can, accordingly, decrease the probability of system failure or degradation by revalidating the qualification of first production articles and obtaining independent pedigree reviews of all flight articles.


Flightworthy: able to meet all performance and life cycle requirements, including effects of predicted worst-case environments.

Space system: comprises space vehicles, upper stages, payloads, and launch vehicles.

Pedigree review: a review of component and vehicle data packages by contractor personnel intended to ensure that the subject article has been manufactured and tested in accordance with approved processes and requirements.

Independent pedigree review: a pedigree review conducted by personnel outside the management control of the contractor.

4. RESPONSIBILITIES AND PROCEDURES. Each SMC program director shall define the scope of the required independent pedigree reviews, ensure that they are scheduled as needed to support program milestones, and designate the review teams. The review teams shall evaluate the data packages as well as the qualification history of first production articles. All review team activities and findings shall be formally documented and submitted to the program director, who shall initiate corrective actions if warranted. Pedigree review documentation shall be maintained and updated by the program office throughout the life of the program. Details on how to perform and document a pedigree review are provided in SMC Pamphlet 800-XX, "Pedigree Review Process Guidelines."


Lieutenant General, USAF