Compiled By Deborah Austin The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has awarded a $300,000 grant to the Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG) -- a not-for-profit trade association of automotive manufacturers and suppliers -- for a pilot project. The project, scheduled for completion by June 2002, will support the deployment of standards for the exchange of product-data-management (PDM) information in the automotive industry. The purpose: to Web-enable existing technologies and standards for total communication between dissimilar systems, so different companies can coordinate engineering and manufacturing. For the pilot's first stage, four teams will address such issues as requirements, data/schema development, software development and deployment. The AIAG will coordinate the pilot with other standards-setting groups and with global partners in Europe and Asia via the Strategic Automotive product data Standards Industry Group (SASIG) consortium. NIST, Gaithersburg, Md., is a non-regulatory federal agency within the U.S. Commerce Department's Technology Administration.