BA 9000

BA 9000 is the application of ISO 9001 specifically to ballistic-resistant body armor manufacturing. When a manufacturing facility operates a quality management system (QMS) certified as conforming to BA 9000, the manufacturer provides additional confidence in its ability to meet the needs of criminal justice practitioners and consistently produce armor that continues to represent those samples used for initial performance testing.

In addition to the requirements of ISO 9001 being applied to the manufacture of ballistic-resistant body armor, BA 9000 also includes the following requirements:

  1. The manufacturer’s ISO 9001 certification must apply to the manufacture of ballistic body armor.
  2. Documentation requirements concerning both the preservation of raw materials and body armor “build sheets” (construction details).
  3. Specify that the NIJ Ballistic Resistance of Body Armor Standard and NIJ Ballistic Body Armor Compliance Testing Program (NIJ CTP) documents (including forms, applications and standard operating procedures (SOPs)) be included as documents that must be controlled.
  4. Specify that test reports referenced by the NIJ CTP and communications with the NIJ CTP be included as records that must be controlled and maintained.
  5. Specify that staff members with approval authority shall have competencies defined.
  6. The NIJ Ballistic Resistance of Body Armor Standard and NIJ Body Armor CTP documents, forms, applications and SOPs shall be considered as containing criteria for product acceptance.
  7. Purchase requirements and specifications for both ballistic materials and material used for panel covers shall consider the impact on ballistic performance and include lot testing of bulk materials.
  8. Product traceability from raw materials to individual end products using serial and lot numbers unique to each armor.
  9. Ballistic materials shall be protected from detrimental environmental factors (throughout the production cycle) such as temperature, humidity, contamination, rough handling and ultraviolet radiation.

Although demonstration of conformity of the quality management system with BA 9000 also demonstrates compliance with ISO 9001, conformity of the quality management system with ISO 9001 does not of itself demonstrate compliance with BA 9000. Therefore certification to ISO 9001 alone is not sufficient for purposes related to the NIJ CTP.

Additional confidence in the manufacturer’s consistency then permits a reduction in the frequency of manufacturing location surveillance inspections related to the NIJ CTP Ballistic Body Armor Conformity Assessment Program. This also results in a reduction in surveillance inspection costs to manufacturers proportional to the number of models they are actively manufacturing.

In order for ballistic body armor manufacturers to have their quality management system (QMS) certified as conforming to BA 9000, they must identify an acceptable certification body accredited by ANSI-ASQ National Accreditation Board (ANAB) or IAS to perform this work. Links to the ANAB and IAS CB Directories are provided in the resources provided below.

Following certification, the manufacturer must alert and provide evidence of certification to the NIJ CTP before surveillance inspections can be reduced.

Additional resources are available below: