Part number

From ArticleWorld

Part number is a unique code used to identify a particular item for the convenience of consumers or at a certain stage of manufacture. Its main purpose is to simplify the task of identifying and referencing.

Importance of part numbers

Part numbers are very important in referencing hardware items, assembly line components and electronic parts. It usually happens that manufacturing of a particular item, for example, a resistor used in electronics, may be made by different companies. Each manufacturing company will use its own style of referencing. But a developer, using resistors manufactured by a number of different parties, may more often than not prefer to use a single convention in order to designate part numbers to those resistors. Hence a different convention is adopted by the user in order to eliminate the possibility of confusion.

As mentioned above, part numbers are generated by manufacturers and users/ developers according to a pre-decided format. Parts to be numbered usually include electrical items (wires, cables, soldering lugs, crocodile clips), electronic components (resistors, inductors, capacitors, programming cables) and fastening hardware like screws, bolts, nuts etc. There can be other important industrial items that require to be tagged with a part number.

Example of a part number being used

Consider an example of a part number assigned to a fixed resistor. Suppose it has the following specifications:

  1. Precision: Standard
  2. Resistance: 100 Ω
  3. Mount: Through hole
  4. Type: Carbon film; (+/-) 5% tolerance
  5. Case: RC07 (1/4 w)

The part number may be specified as ERE0101JB with ‘ERE’ meaning ‘electrical resistor’, ‘0101’ meaning 10x101 Ω and ‘JB’ referring to the other particulars.

Kinds of part numbers

Part numbers can be of two kinds, namely significant and non-significant. Significant part numbers include digits or symbols that point to certain salient features of a particular part. For instance, a bolt may have a special notation for being a ‘hardware component’, or a capacitor as ‘electronic component’. Non-significant part numbers are used when the particular specifications as used in significant part numbers are not required. Numbering may be simply done sequentially.