3 A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W Y


In a production environment, identification describes the process of labelling goods for put-away, including their intended storage location. RFID tags can be used to help automate later retrieval.

IEC 61508

The IEC 61508 is the international standard for electrical, electronic, and programmable electronic safety related systems. It sets out the requirements to ensure systems are designed, implemented, operated, and maintained to provide the required safety integrity level.


In-licensing means obtaining a license to use some other party’s technology/IP. Generally this involves payment of a license fee usually an up-front payment plus a monthly/quarterly/yearly license fee.


Inorganics are chemicals whose molecules do not contain a carbon-hydrogen bond. This means there are some carbon compounds which are inorganic, for example, carbon dioxide, also all carbonates such as calcium carbonate.

Most carbon compounds, for example proteins, carbohydrates, sugars, vitamins, plastics, and alcohols contain the carbon-hydrogen bond, so are considered ‘organic’.


Instrumentation is a general term to describe the sensors, devices, interconnections, and systems used to observe, measure, and communicate what is happening or what has happened in some physical environment. Control systems use data from instrumentation to choose future actions.

Integrated Circuit

An integrated circuit (also known as IC, microcircuit, microchip, silicon chip, or chip) is a miniaturized electronic circuit manufactured in a thin layer of semiconductor material.

The technology to make electronic circuits this way was developed in the 1960s. Since then, the capacity and speed of these circuits has grown enormously, and yet the cost and physical size has gone down. This combination has been the driving force behind dramatic growth of the computer and communications industries.

Integrated Defense System

An integrated defense system typically combines two or more of weapons and aircraft, intelligence and surveillance systems, and communications and IT. These systems are usually provided by large scale prime contractors, such as Boeing, Lockheed Martin or BAE Systems.

Intellectual Property

Intellectual property refers to creations of the mind. Intellectual property regulations seek to protect the value of these creations. There are two main parts to intellectual property regulations:

  • patents address inventions, trademarks, industrial designs
  • geographic indications of source.

Copyright addresses literary and artistic works such as novels, poems and plays, films, musical works, artistic works such as drawings, paintings, photographs, and sculptures.

Intercontinental Exchange

Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) is a company which operates in the arena of regulated global futures exchanges and over-the-counter (OTC) markets for agricultural, energy, equity index and currency contracts, as well as credit derivatives. It provides clearing, market data and risk management services. It is one of the largest futures and options exchanges in the world. It operates the former International Petroleum Exchange as ICE Futures.


Intermodalism is the coordinated use of multiple modes of transport (i.e. road, rail, ship, air) to move containerized freight from source to destination.

International Energy Agency

The International Energy Agency (IEA) is an intergovernmental organization which acts as energy policy advisor to 28 countries including the US, the UK, Canada, S. Korea, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, and many European countries. It structures its role into three areas: energy security, economic development and environmental protection.

International Oil & Gas Company

An international (or integrated) oil & gas company spans exploration and production, transportation, refining, and marketing. This is essentially everything – starting with exploration, leading to the point of use of oil and gas.

International Petroleum Exchange

The International Petroleum Exchange is now known as ICE Futures by virtue of its acquisition in 2001 by ICE. It was one of the world’s largest futures and options exchanges.

Internet of Things

The Internet of Things (IoT) is:

(1) the set of all devices (but excluding traditional computer systems) which are connected to the Internet,

(2) the technology which enables advanced interconnectivity of ‘smart’ devices to the Internet and each other.

The scope of the IoT ranges from fridges that send messages to your smartphone when you run out of milk, to factory machines that can ‘talk’ to each other, follow instructions from computer systems, and run entire production process with virtually no human input.

Internet Protocol Address

An Internet Protocol address (IP address) identifies a device connected to the Internet. There are two formats – the widely used version 4 (IPv4) and the newer version 6 (IPv6). Both are numerical labels which are used by network connection electronics to enable communication between devices, even though many devices are sharing the same cables and other communication links.


Interoperability is the capability of two or more systems (especially computer systems) to work together.


An intranet is a computer network for use only by people and systems within an organization.


Inventory is the aggregate of all the goods and materials used and held by a company to make, or incorporate into, its products. The main types of inventory are raw-materials inventory, work-in-process inventory, and finished-goods inventory.

Inventory carrying cost

Inventory carrying cost is the cost of owning inventory and having it available. Costs depend on the inventory’s value, and also on storage space, obsolescence, spoilage, taxes and insurance.

Higher inventory levels drive higher inventory carrying costs, but can also improve customer service (product available to ship today) and reduce risk of disruption due to events such as supplier delays or the breakdown of critical machine.

Inventory days of supply

Inventory days of supply measures the average amount of inventory on hand, expressed as how long it would take to use it all. The assumption is no more inventory comes in, and production usage will be average.

The volatility of supply and demand determine what is required. Companies with stable demand and reliable suppliers can operate with very low inventory days of supply.

ISO 14000

ISO 14000 is a set of standards known as the Environment Management System, produced by the International Organization for Standardization, which is often called the International Standards Organization.

ISO 14000 standards ask companies to treat environment management like an ongoing project subject to its own processes, monitoring, and IT support. The aim is to help companies limit the environmental damage caused by their activities.

ISO 9000

ISO 9000 is a set of standards for quality-process audit produced by the International Organization for Standardization (often called the International Standards Organization). Compliance with ISO 9000 enables manufacturing plants to receive internationally recognized certification to confirm that stated quality processes are adhered to in practice.