ASTM International
Overview
 
ASTM International, known until 2001 as the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), is an international standards organization
Standards organization
A standards organization, standards body, standards developing organization , or standards setting organization is any organization whose primary activities are developing, coordinating, promulgating, revising, amending, reissuing, interpreting, or otherwise producing technical standards that are...

 that develops and publishes voluntary consensus technical standard
International standard
International standards are standards developed by international standards organizations. International standards are available for consideration and use, worldwide...

s for a wide range of materials, products, systems, and services. The organization's headquarters is in West Conshohocken, Pennsylvania
West Conshohocken, Pennsylvania
West Conshohocken is a borough in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, United States. The population was 1,462 in 1880; 2,482 in 1950; 1,516 in 1980; 1,294 in 1990; and 1,320 at the 2010 census....

, about 5 miles (8 km) northwest of Philadelphia.

ASTM, founded in 1898 as the American Section of the International Association for Testing and Materials predates other standards organizations such as BSI
British Standards
British Standards are the standards produced by BSI Group which is incorporated under a Royal Charter...

 (1901), DIN
Deutsches Institut für Normung
is the German national organization for standardization and is that country's ISO member body. DIN is a Registered German Association headquartered in Berlin...

 (1917), ANSI
Ansi
Ansi is a village in Kaarma Parish, Saare County, on the island of Saaremaa, Estonia....

(1918) and AFNOR
AFNOR
Association française de Normalisation is the French national organization for standardization and its International Organization for Standardization member body....

 (1926).
Encyclopedia
ASTM International, known until 2001 as the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), is an international standards organization
Standards organization
A standards organization, standards body, standards developing organization , or standards setting organization is any organization whose primary activities are developing, coordinating, promulgating, revising, amending, reissuing, interpreting, or otherwise producing technical standards that are...

 that develops and publishes voluntary consensus technical standard
International standard
International standards are standards developed by international standards organizations. International standards are available for consideration and use, worldwide...

s for a wide range of materials, products, systems, and services. The organization's headquarters is in West Conshohocken, Pennsylvania
West Conshohocken, Pennsylvania
West Conshohocken is a borough in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, United States. The population was 1,462 in 1880; 2,482 in 1950; 1,516 in 1980; 1,294 in 1990; and 1,320 at the 2010 census....

, about 5 miles (8 km) northwest of Philadelphia.

ASTM, founded in 1898 as the American Section of the International Association for Testing and Materials predates other standards organizations such as BSI
British Standards
British Standards are the standards produced by BSI Group which is incorporated under a Royal Charter...

 (1901), DIN
Deutsches Institut für Normung
is the German national organization for standardization and is that country's ISO member body. DIN is a Registered German Association headquartered in Berlin...

 (1917), ANSI
Ansi
Ansi is a village in Kaarma Parish, Saare County, on the island of Saaremaa, Estonia....

(1918) and AFNOR
AFNOR
Association française de Normalisation is the French national organization for standardization and its International Organization for Standardization member body....

 (1926). ASTM has a dominant role among standards developers in the USA, and claims to be the world's largest developer of standards. Using a consensus
Consensus decision-making
Consensus decision-making is a group decision making process that seeks the consent, not necessarily the agreement, of participants and the resolution of objections. Consensus is defined by Merriam-Webster as, first, general agreement, and second, group solidarity of belief or sentiment. It has its...

 process, ASTM supports thousands of volunteer technical committees, which draw their members from around the world and collectively develop and maintain more than 12,000 standards.

ASTM International publishes the Annual Book of ASTM Standards each year in print, Compact Disc
Compact Disc
The Compact Disc is an optical disc used to store digital data. It was originally developed to store and playback sound recordings exclusively, but later expanded to encompass data storage , write-once audio and data storage , rewritable media , Video Compact Discs , Super Video Compact Discs ,...

 (CD) and online versions. The online version was available by subscription and cost was based upon usage. For 2008, the complete set of books or CDs cost almost US$
United States dollar
The United States dollar , also referred to as the American dollar, is the official currency of the United States of America. It is divided into 100 smaller units called cents or pennies....

9000 and included 81 volumes. For 2010, the complete set of books or CDs cost almost $9700 and included 82 volumes.

History

A group of scientist
Scientist
A scientist in a broad sense is one engaging in a systematic activity to acquire knowledge. In a more restricted sense, a scientist is an individual who uses the scientific method. The person may be an expert in one or more areas of science. This article focuses on the more restricted use of the word...

s and engineer
Engineer
An engineer is a professional practitioner of engineering, concerned with applying scientific knowledge, mathematics and ingenuity to develop solutions for technical problems. Engineers design materials, structures, machines and systems while considering the limitations imposed by practicality,...

s, led by Charles Benjamin Dudley
Charles Benjamin Dudley
Charles Benjamin Dudley was a U.S. chemist who was an early proponent of standardisation in industry.Dudley was born in Oxford, New York, and owing to family circumstances, had to wait until 1867 before he could enter Yale College, supporting himself as a night editor on the New Haven Palladium...

 formed the American Society for Testing and Materials in 1898 to address the frequent rail
Rail tracks
The track on a railway or railroad, also known as the permanent way, is the structure consisting of the rails, fasteners, sleepers and ballast , plus the underlying subgrade...

 breaks
Fracture
A fracture is the separation of an object or material into two, or more, pieces under the action of stress.The word fracture is often applied to bones of living creatures , or to crystals or crystalline materials, such as gemstones or metal...

 plaguing the fast-growing railroad
Rail transport
Rail transport is a means of conveyance of passengers and goods by way of wheeled vehicles running on rail tracks. In contrast to road transport, where vehicles merely run on a prepared surface, rail vehicles are also directionally guided by the tracks they run on...

 industry. The group developed a standard for the steel used to fabricate rails.

In 2001, ASTM changed its name to ASTM International to reflect global participation in ASTM and worldwide use of its standards.

In 2009, a joint effort by standards development organizations AAMI
Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation
The Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation founded in 1966, is a voluntary consensus organization which promotes knowledge and use of medical instrumentation. It creates standards, educates and certifies technicians, and publishes technical documents, books, periodicals, and...

, ANSI
Ansi
Ansi is a village in Kaarma Parish, Saare County, on the island of Saaremaa, Estonia....

, ASTM, and DIN
Din
DIN or Din or din can have several meanings:* A din is a loud noise.* Dīn, an Arabic term meaning "religion" or "way of life".* Din is one of the ten aspects of the Ein Sof in Kabbalah ....

 created a single, centralized database for medical device standards.

Standards

The standards produced by ASTM International fall into six categories:
  • the Standard Specification, that defines the requirements to be satisfied by subject of the standard.
  • the Standard Test Method
    Test method
    A test method is a definitive procedure that produces a test result.A test can be considered as technical operation that consists of determination of one or more characteristics of a given product, process or service according to a specified procedure. Often a test is part of an experiment.The test...

    , that defines the way a test is performed and the precision of the result. The result of the test may be used to assess compliance with a Standard Specification.
  • the Standard Practice, that defines a sequence of operations that, unlike a Standard Test Method, does not produce a result.
  • the Standard Guide, that provides an organized collection of information or series of options that does not recommend a specific course of action.
  • the Standard Classification, that provides an arrangement or division of materials, products, systems, or services into groups based on similar characteristics such as origin, composition, properties, or use.
  • the Terminology Standard, that provides agreed definitions of terms used in the other standards.

The quality of the standards is such that they are frequently used worldwide.

The Annual Book of ASTM Standards covers 15 sections of interest plus a master index:
  1. Iron and Steel Products
  2. Nonferrous Metal Products
  3. Metals Test Methods and Analytical Procedures
  4. Construction
  5. Petroleum Products, Lubricants, and Fossil Fuels
  6. Paints, Related Coatings, and Aromatics
  7. Textiles
  8. Plastics
  9. Rubber
  10. Electrical Insulation and Electronics
  11. Water and Environmental Technology
  12. Nuclear, Solar, and Geothermal Energy
  13. Medical Devices and Services
  14. General Methods and Instrumentation
  15. General Products, Chemical Specialties, and End Use Products
  16. Index to all sections and volumes


ASTM Standards can be purchased as a digital library subscription or individually from ASTM and other qualified standards providers. When maintaining a large standards library, often digital subscriptions are used to simplify staying current on standards and to remain in compliance with all copyright laws. A technical library at a university may also have copies of standards to review.

Membership and organization

Membership in the organization is open to anyone with an interest in its activities. Standards are developed within committees, and new committees are formed as needed, upon request of interested members. Membership in most committees is voluntary and is initiated by the member's own request, not by appointment nor by invitation. Members are classified as users, producers, consumers, and "general interest". The latter include academics and consultants. Users include industry users, who may be producers in the context of other technical committees, and end-users such as consumers. In order to meet the requirements of antitrust
Antitrust
The United States antitrust law is a body of laws that prohibits anti-competitive behavior and unfair business practices. Antitrust laws are intended to encourage competition in the marketplace. These competition laws make illegal certain practices deemed to hurt businesses or consumers or both,...

 laws, producers must constitute less than 50% of every committee or subcommittee, and votes are limited to one per producer company. Because of these restrictions, there can be a substantial waiting-list of producers seeking organizational memberships on the more popular committees. Members can, however, participate without a formal vote and their input will be fully considered.

As of 2007, more than 30,000 members, including over 1100 organizational members, from more than 120 countries, including 120 members in China
China
Chinese civilization may refer to:* China for more general discussion of the country.* Chinese culture* Greater China, the transnational community of ethnic Chinese.* History of China* Sinosphere, the area historically affected by Chinese culture...

 as of 2005. The 2011 Chairman of the Board is Catherine H. Pilarz; James A. Thomas is the President of ASTM International.

ASTM International presents several awards for contributions to standards authorship, including the ASTM International Award of Merit
ASTM International Award of Merit
The ASTM International Award of Merit is an award that was established in the industrial era following World War II as a response to the growing need to recognize outstanding contributions to the leadership and authorship of consensus standards for manufacturing specifications and analysis...

 (the organization's highest award)

ASTM International is recognized by the United States Internal Revenue Service
Internal Revenue Service
The Internal Revenue Service is the revenue service of the United States federal government. The agency is a bureau of the Department of the Treasury, and is under the immediate direction of the Commissioner of Internal Revenue...

 as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

Standards compliance

ASTM International has no role in requiring or enforcing compliance with its standards. The standards, however, may become mandatory when referenced by an external contract, corporation, or government.
  • In the United States
    United States
    The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

    , ASTM standards have been adopted, by incorporation or by reference, in many federal, state, and municipal government regulations. The National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act
    National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act
    The National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act was signed into law March 7, 1996. The Act amended several existing acts and mandated new directions for federal agencies with the purpose of:...

    , passed in 1995, requires the federal government to use privately developed consensus standards whenever possible. The Act reflects what had long been recommended as best practice within the federal government.
  • Other governments (local and worldwide) also have referenced ASTM standards
  • Corporations doing international business may choose to reference an ASTM standard.

See also

  • Materials property
  • Pt/Co scale
    Pt/Co scale
    The Platinum-Cobalt Scale is a color scale that was introduced in 1892 by chemist Allen Hazen . The index was developed as a way to evaluate pollution levels in waste water. It has since expanded to a common method of comparison of the intensity of yellow-tinted samples...

  • Technical standard
  • International standards

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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