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November 2008

HEADLINES... This month’s top stories:

New Biodiesel Specifications Published

Four standards now available from ASTM International provide quality assurance for biodiesel — a fuel used in freight trucks, buses, boats, ships and more. The new and revised ASTM biodiesel standards include: ASTM D975-08a, Specification for Diesel Fuel Oils; ASTM D396-08b, Specification for Fuel Oils; and ASTM D7467-08, Specification for Diesel Fuel Oil, Biodiesel Blend (B6 to 20). In addition, ASTM D6751-08, Specification for Biodiesel Fuel Blend Stock (B100) for Middle Distillate Fuels, was revised to include a requirement that controls minor compounds using a new cold soak filterability test. Engine companies, vehicle manufacturers, pipeline operators, biodiesel and petroleum companies will use the group of specifications for fuel preparation, quality checking, engine design, and bid and purchasing contracts.[Full story]

New ASTM Committee on Sustainability

ASTM International has announced the formation of Committee E60 on Sustainability. This new standards development initiative results from the cooperative efforts of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and cross-industry stakeholders who share mutual goals for global sustainable development. The initial scope of Committee E60 will be driven by subcommittees on Building and Construction, Hospitality and General Sustainability Standards. Committee E60 will build upon the vast body of work of multiple ASTM technical committees who have developed standards that address various issues of sustainability. Click here for more information on this new committee. [Full story]

Applications for Mather Scholarship

ASTM is currently seeking nominees for the 2009 ASTM International Katharine and Bryant Mather Scholarship. Administered by Committee C09 on Concrete and Concrete Aggregates, the scholarship applies to students pursuing degrees in cement or concrete materials technology or concrete construction. Full-time undergraduate students completing at least their second/sophomore year or graduate students in cement or concrete materials technology are eligible to apply. Click here for more information.

ASTM Graduate Scholarship

A new ASTM scholarship opportunity is available for students. The ASTM International Graduate Scholarship rewards up to four graduate students who have demonstrated high levels of interest or involvement with ASTM standards. Each recipient of the graduate scholarship shall receive $10,000 to be used for their educational expenses, including tuition, books, fees and materials. For more information, visit the Campus section of the ASTM Web site.

GLOBAL NOTES . . . ASTM around the world:

New MOU Signing

ASTM has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Emirates Authority for Standardization and Metrology (ESMA), the national standards body of the United Arab Emirates. The MOU program promotes communication between ASTM International and national standards bodies worldwide, fostering awareness of the standardization systems of all parties involved. To date, 62 MOUs have been signed. View more information about the ESMA/ASTM MOU signing and ASTM MOU program.

World Standards Day

Celebrated annually each October, World Standards Day pays tribute to the thousands of volunteers around the world who participate in standardization activities and helps to raise awareness of the role that standards play in addressing national and global issues. Co-chaired by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), the theme of World Standards Day 2008 was “Intelligent and Sustainable Buildings.” At the U.S. celebration of World Standards Day held on Oct. 23 in Washington, D.C., ASTM staff members presented information about the new ASTM Committee E60 on Sustainability. ASTM International also joined in the celebration of World Standards Day in Guangzhou, China, where Liu Fei, ASTM's chief representative in China, made a presentation at a forum on standards, sustainability and green buildings. Liu Fei discussed ASTM's standards development process and ASTM's work in China as well as trends in standardization activities around the world.

COMMITTEE NEWS... The latest from ASTM's technical committees:

Inflatable Air Mattresses
A new specification from Committee F15 will help manufacturers label their product to warn consumers of the hazard of suffocation on soft or deflating mattresses. [Full story]

CCRL Calibration Standards
Two new calibration standards for use with X-ray fluorescence equipment in the chemical analysis of hydraulic cement are now available from the Cement and Concrete Reference Laboratory (CCRL). [Full story]

Luminance Ratio
A request from the United States Navy was the impetus behind the development of a new test method from Committee E12 on Color and Appearance. [Full story]

Solderability Applications
All interested parties are encouraged to participate in the development of a new Committee B01 standard that will cover the specifics for a tin-plated copper conductor intended to achieve solderability. [Full story]

Polyethylene Pipe
Installers of plumbing systems using PEX and PE-RT polyethylene pipe will be the primary users of a new specification from Committee F17. [Full story]

Raman Spectroscopy
All interested parties, particularly end users from the forensics sciences, are encouraged to join in the development of a new Committee E13 guide on relative intensity correction of raman spectrometers. [Full story]

Solar Energy Applications
Committee G03 on Weathering and Durability has approved a new solar spectral standard for fenestration applications. [Full story]


DID YOU KNOW?...Smokeout and Standards

Cigarettes and Fire Safety

Since 1977, the American Cancer Society has encouraged smokers across the U.S. to take part in their Great American Smokeout, which is held annually on the third Thursday of November. The event challenges people to stop using tobacco and raises awareness of the dangers of smoking. The Smokeout has led to many programs and new smoke-free laws that are saving lives. A member of the Coalition for Fire-Safe Cigarettes, ASTM International has developed a standard that has been incorporated into many laws and also contributes to saving lives by preventing smoking-related fires. Ignition-resistant cigarettes that perform well in ASTM E2187, Standard Test Method for Measuring the Ignition Strength of Cigarettes, are less likely to start fires when left unattended. ASTM E2187 has already been adopted in the majority of U.S. states and nationwide in Canada, where the standard is also available in French, and Finland has proposed that all cigarettes sold in that country be tested using ASTM E2187. Events like the Great American Smokeout and ASTM standards such as E2187 hope to reduce the injuries and deaths associated with smoking worldwide.

PUBLICATIONS... New publications from ASTM now available:

ASTM International's Masonry Standards for the Building Industry: 6th Edition


ASTM Standards for Welding


ASTM Standards Related to Corrosion Testing of Metals: 3rd Edition


ASTM Standards for Mechanical Fasteners and Related Processes: 2nd Edition


Manual 51, Distillation and Vapor Pressure Measurement in Petroleum Products


ASTM Online Dictionary of Engineering Science and Technology


ASTM Online Lab, Equipment and Consulting Directories


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ASTM International is one of the world’s largest management systems for the development of voluntary standards for materials, products, systems, and services. Currently, ASTM has more than 30,000 members from around the globe representing industry, government, academia, and consumers. Participation in ASTM International is open to any interested party. The Annual Book of ASTM Standards contains more than 12,000 standards developed by ASTM’s technical standards-writing committees representing over 100 diverse technical fields.

Erin McElrone, Editor

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