Online Access to the Annual Book of ASTM Standards

The Most Current Documents at Your Fingertips

Online access to individual volumes of the Annual Book of ASTM Standards means immediate access to the most updated versions of ASTM International standards. Whether concrete or metals, construction or petroleum, environmental or consumer, and whether it’s the ASTM member virtual volume or other online subscription, BOS volumes online contain the latest editions of the standards you need in your work.

Patrick Cole, chief chemist for ATI Allvac, Monroe, N.C., and chairman of ASTM Committee E01 on Analytical Chemistry for Metals, Ores and Related Materials, says that much of the laboratory testing by ATI Allvac — quality assurance chemical analysis for company-produced materials — relies on ASTM International tests, and he regularly uses ASTM spectrometric and fusion analysis methods for titanium, titanium alloys and nickel alloys. He appreciates the BOS volume online. “The volume is always readily available on my PC; looking up standards is quick and generally painless,” Cole says.

Online BOS volumes are updated twice each week; users can view and download the most current versions of standards in HTML or PDF format, and they can sign up to receive update notifications. In addition to a “Basic” volume, which includes active standards only, an upgraded, “Plus” version is also available. The Plus version includes redlined versions (showing changes from one edition to another), historical and withdrawn standards. This helps subscribers easily see changes that have been made to previous editions and ensures access to all the available versions.

With access to standards online, “I am assured that I am looking at the latest revision,” says Cole. “This is extremely important to me. One of our two major laboratory accreditors actually accredits us to the technical aspects of the application of the ASTM methods in our laboratories.” In addition, an accreditor requires that ATI Allvac laboratory procedures be updated within six months of a standard’s publication date, and Cole finds it useful to have notification as soon as a revision becomes available. “This gives me the longest possible time to process and disseminate the information to affected corporate laboratories,” he says.

Users logging on to access their subscription volumes can search for standards by alphanumeric designation or keyword. A newly improved online function divides the search results into categories and subcategories to help target specific documents — fast; searches can also be expanded from the standards found within the user’s volume or the entire ASTM library of standards (the full text of a standard would be available only within the subscription, however).

Within a standard, a hyperlinked contents list takes users to specific sections, and links are included for citations of other standards, notes regarding content, and referenced sections or tables, as well as the ability to go right to the top or bottom of the document. Any downloaded PDFs are marked with subscriber name, date and time of download. In addition, users can view subscription usage and see what standards have been downloaded.

Each of the more than 80 volumes of the Annual Book of ASTM Standards contains standards on a particular subject or related subjects. ASTM members can choose a free BOS volume online as part of their member benefit or pay a small fee to upgrade to a Plus volume. Check pricing specifics in the ASTM International Standards Catalog.

Online volumes of the Annual Book of ASTM Standards speed the process of getting to standards and their most current versions. That’s a useful thing.

This article appears in the issue of Standardization News.