Published: Jan 2010
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TECHNOLOGY IS UNDERGOING ACCELERATING change. No longer do people have to wait months or even years for analytical methods to be submitted to ASTM International, tested, and voted for approval. The response of the various committees of ASTM International to new developments in the industrial and petroleum industries, and to unexpected occurrences in the field, is both swift and focused. It is because of this unprecedented and exponential increase in new testing methods that Manual 1 is being revised only 6 years after its prior publication. Committee D02 on Petroleum Products and Lubricants has assumed the responsibility of revising Manual on Significance of Tests for Petroleum Products (ASTM Manual Series: MNL 1), although other national and international standards organizations contribute significantly to the development of standard test methods for petroleum products. These organizations include the Energy Institute (EI), formerly known as the Institute of Petroleum in the United Kingdom, the Deutsches Institut für Normung (DIN) in Germany, the Association Française de Normalisation (AFNOR) in France, the Japanese Industrial Standards (JIS) in Japan, the CEN (European Committee for Standardization), and the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). Selected test methods from these organizations have been cross-referenced where relevant with ASTM International standards in selected chapters in this publication. There are discussions presently in progress to harmonize many standard test methods so they are technically equivalent to one another. The chapters in this manual are not intended to be research papers or exhaustive treatises of a particular field. The purpose of the discussions herein is to answer two questions: What are the relevant tests that are done on various petroleum products and why do we perform these particular tests? All tests are designed to measure properties of a product such that the “quality” of that product may be described. I consider a workable definition of a quality product to be “that which meets agreed-on specifications.” It is not necessary that the quality of a product be judged by its high purity, although it may very well be, but merely that it meets specifications previously agreed on among buyers, sellers, regulators, transferors, etc. The various chapters in this publication discuss individual or classes of petroleum products and describe the standardized testing that must be done on those products to assure all parties involved that they are dealing with quality products.
Rand, Salvatore J.
Consultant, North Fort Myers, FL