Automation Alley

Programs & Services >> Defense and Manufacturing >> Programs

This is a pie chart showing the Financial Risk Rating for Companies in VisCom.

VisCom is an industrial base visibility  and communication tool that lists thousands of manufacturers and suppliers across the U.S. It includes valuable information on each company, such as their financial viability and technical capabilities, and can be used to identify companies capable of addressing shortages in the Department of Defense supply chain.

Diminishing Manufacturing Sources and Material Shortages (DMSMS) Program

  • DMSMS is defined by the Department of Defense (DoD) as the loss or impending loss of the last known manufacturer or supplier of raw material, production parts or repair parts.
  • Automation Alley has compiled a comprehensive industrial base visibility and communication tool, VisCom, that identifies parts manufacturers and materials suppliers across the U.S. that are capable of addressing shortages in the DoD supply chain.
  • In addition to finding alternate suppliers of parts or materials, Automation Alley addresses impending losses by reverse engineering parts when technical data is unavailable and conducting industrial base studies to anticipate shortages by identifying larger manufacturing trends. 

Sustainment Engineering Risk Assessment (SERA)

  • A SERA is a detailed study of all parts that can be repaired or replaced on a defense system. The study includes many data fields on each part, including maintenance records, system usage data, ordering demand history, procurement history and manufacturer financial information.
  • While information about each part may exist in other locations, SERAs add value by consolidating the data about each part into a single database.
  • Automation Alley has been commissioned to provide several SERAs for its defense partners. 

Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)

  • The Department of Defense SBIR program provides funding for small businesses to conduct early-stage research and development. Funding is administered by the Small Business Association.
  • Eligible projects must fulfill an R&D need identified by the DoD and have the potential to be developed into a product or service for commercial or defense markets.

 National Automotive Center (NAC) 

  • Automation Alley operates under a formal Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with the U.S. Army TARDEC.
  • NAC, a division of TARDEC, focuses on developing dual-use automotive technologies and their applications to military ground vehicles. NAC employs CRADAs and SBIR program contracts to leverage investments in automotive technology and to initiate shared technology programs.

For more information or to request a meeting, contact the Automation Alley Resource Center at 800-427-5100 or email