ASTM D5338-98(2003)

    Standard Test Method for Determining Aerobic Biodegradation of Plastic Materials Under Controlled Composting Conditions


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    1. Scope

    1.1 This test method determines the degree and rate of aerobic biodegradation of plastic materials on exposure to a controlled-composting environment under laboratory conditions. This test method is designed to yield reproducible and repeatable test results under controlled conditions that resemble composting conditions. The test substances are exposed to an inoculum that is derived from compost from municipal solid waste. The aerobic composting takes place in an environment where temperature, aeration and humidity are closely monitored and controlled.

    1.2 This test method is designed to yield a percentage of conversion of carbon in the sample to carbon dioxide. The rate of biodegradation is monitored as well.

    1.3 This test method is designed to be applicable to all plastic materials that are not inhibitory to the microorganisms present in aerobic composting piles.

    1.4 The values stated in SI units are to be regarded as the standard.

    1.5 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use. Specific hazard statements are given in Section 8.

    1.6 This test method is equivalent to ISO 14852.


    2. Referenced Documents (purchase separately) The documents listed below are referenced within the subject standard but are not provided as part of the standard.

    ASTM Standards

    D618 Practice for Conditioning Plastics for Testing

    D883 Terminology Relating to Plastics

    D1293 Test Methods for pH of Water

    D2908 Practice for Measuring Volatile Organic Matter in Water by Aqueous-Injection Gas Chromatography

    D3590 Test Methods for Total Kjeldahl Nitrogen in Water

    D4129 Test Method for Total and Organic Carbon in Water by High Temperature Oxidation and by Coulometric Detection

    E260 Practice for Packed Column Gas Chromatography

    E355 Practice for Gas Chromatography Terms and Relationships

    APHA--AWWA--WPCF Standards

    2540 D Total Suspended Solids Dried at 103 to 105C Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater, 17th Edition, 1989, American Public Health Association, 1740 Broadway, New York, NY 19919.

    2540 E Fixed and Volatile Solids Ignited at 550C

    ISO Standard

    ISO 14855 Plastics--Evaluation of the Ultimate Aerobic Biodegradability and Disintegration Under Controlled Composting Conditions--Method by Analysis of Released Carbon Dioxide Available from American National Standards Institute (ANSI), 25 W. 43rd St., 4th Floor, New York, NY 10036, http://www.ansi.org.


    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code


    Referencing This Standard
    Link Here
    Link to Active (This link will always route to the current Active version of the standard.)

    DOI: 10.1520/D5338-98R03

    Citation Format

    ASTM D5338-98(2003), Standard Test Method for Determining Aerobic Biodegradation of Plastic Materials Under Controlled Composting Conditions, ASTM International, West Conshohocken, PA, 2003, www.astm.org

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