Common Strategic Electronic Parts

The Common Strategic Electronic Parts (CSEP) application (CSEP-DB) truly gives the government the power to manage its technological baseline. By providing a highly available, highly secure, and high data integrity instance of the application, there is no longer a need to rummage for part data from external sources. Collaboration should be simple and standard, with human readable data exchanges the norm. Instead of requiring hunting and collection of random data exchange formats from services, programs, and contractors, an Inter-Service instance of CSEP-DB (denoted as ISSEP-DB) will hold all qualified/production part data, shareable to any participating service or program. Data can be exported in Microsoft Excel files for reporting and/or importing purposes allowing part data import into other instances of the CSEP-DB. Files can optionally be password protected with SHA-256 encryption for added security.

CSEP-DB’s flexible and intuitive design provides a low maintenance solution for managing any part type – radiation-hardened or other. Users can dynamically manage part technologies and attributes, providing the ability to start managing any part type at any time as well as allowing new part attributes to be managed – all within minutes. This is all accomplished through the application’s web-based interface with zero developer involvement – no coding or database changes – required.

In early proposal and design phases, data integrity in legacy systems was noted as being poor. Frequent misspellings, duplicate entries, mismatching units of measurement all rampant.  To combat these issues CSEP-DB provides data validation and integrity checks at every input juncture. Part data attributes are validated according to their input type. Numeric values are validated against minimum, maximum, and step values. Text fields are validated against character length constraints, and dropdown values are validated against prepopulated, but fully configurable within the interface, lists of values. Units of measurement are displayed at each input juncture to help ensure standards exist. Data entry is also restricted to defined, but dynamically managed, individuals who provide final validation after automated tools flag out of limit and other potential invalid data.

Optional and configurable access controls provide the ability to segregate data from multiple sub-programs (such as a program’s segments) within a single instance of CSEP-DB. This means multiple organizations can use a single CSEP-DB instance and either allow or disallow other organizations from viewing their data. While the ISSEP-DB instance can impose these sharing rules, the feature is completely optional and designed for CSEP-DB instances at a non-qualified part level where sharing of qualified parts is of little concern, but protecting preproduction parts may be.

The application only requires Windows Server and Microsoft SQL Server to operate. The application has been successfully tested on local Windows Servers as well as cloud-based providers, such as DISA’s milCloud environment (and soon Amazon AWS). Cloud hosting is not required, but provides scaling, flexibility, and high availability without local IT department involvement managing server performance, size, and security.