National Institute of Justice Approved Test Laboratories

Laboratory Application and Approval Process

The National Institute of Justice (NIJ) requires that models of equipment (e.g., ballistic- or stab-resistant body armor, autoloading pistols) tested for NIJ compliance must be tested at an NIJ-approved laboratory.

To be NIJ-approved, a laboratory must meet all of the following requirements:

  • Be accredited by the National Voluntary Laboratory Accreditation Program (NVLAP) of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) as meeting (1) general international standards for laboratory technical competence and quality management, as well as (2) specific technical requirements to perform the body armor tests included in the NIJ standards. Learn more about the NVLAP.
  • Be an independent, third-party laboratory and conduct all body armor compliance testing within the United States.
  • Demonstrate freedom from potential conflicts of interest and maintain independent decisional relationships from its clients, affiliates, contractors, and other organizations.

The Criminal Justice Testing and Evaluation Consortium (CJTEC)—located in Raleigh, North Carolina—operates NIJ’s voluntary Compliance Testing Program (CTP). NIJ has authorized CJTEC to accept applications from laboratories that meet the previously mentioned qualifications for consideration as NIJ-approved laboratories.

IMPORTANT: The first step in this process is for the laboratory to obtain NVLAP accreditation; please contact NVLAP (contact information below) to learn more about this process before completing and submitting a laboratory application package to CJTEC.

The laboratory application package can be downloaded from the CJTEC website. The  explains the roles and responsibilities of each individual party involved in the process and the  contains specific forms and agreements that must be completed and returned to In the subject line of the email, please enter “[Name of equipment seeking approval to test] Test Laboratory Application.”

CJTEC, as the CTP administrator, will review completed applications upon receipt and either contact the laboratory for additional information/clarification or forward on to NIJ for review and approval.


Dana Leaman, Chief
Phone: 301.975.4679

Alex Sundstrom, CTP Operations Manager
Phone: 919.485.2717


Approved Laboratories

Standards-based testing—which involves testing products in accordance with commercial voluntary national performance standards—is conducted at NIJ-approved independent testing laboratories. Following is a list of these laboratories.

Laboratory Autoloading Pistol Laboratories
(NIJ Standard-0112.03 Rev A)
Ballistic-Resistant Armor Laboratories
(NIJ Standard-0101.06)
Stab-Resistant Armor Laboratories
(NIJ Standard-0115.00)
NTS – National Technical Systems – Belcamp (formerly Chesapeake Testing)
NIJ Approval Letter (PDF)
4603B Compass Point Road
Belcamp, MD 21017
Phone: (410) 297-8154
Fax: (410) 297-8160
Contact: Craig Thomas
Yes Yes Yes
NTS Labs LLC-Wichita
NIJ Approval Letter (PDF)
7447 W. 33rd Street North
Wichita, KS 67205
Phone: 316.832.1600
Fax: 316.832.1602
Contact: Matt Lutz – General Manager
Yes Yes Yes
Oregon Ballistic Laboratories, LLC
NIJ Approval Letter (PDF)
2873 22nd Street, S.E.
Salem, OR 97302
Phone: 503.540.8114
Fax: 503.362.5597
Contact: Thomas Ohnstad, Managing Partner
No Yes Yes