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 May 2005 ASTM International News

This Month:

FAA Accepts ASTM International Consensus Standards

Delegates of the Chinese Industry Association for Antimicrobial Materials and Products

Cooperative Agreements with NATO

Virtual Meetings

FAA Accepts ASTM International Consensus Standards for Light Sport Aircraft

For the first time, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has used consensus standards for aircraft design, manufacturing, and maintenance with the acceptance of 15 standards developed by ASTM International Committee F37 on Light Sport Aircraft. The referenced documents, which have been worked on over the last two years, affect fixed-wing airplanes, powered parachutes, gyroplanes, lighter-than-air aircraft, airframe emergency parachutes, and engines.

Earl Lawrence, chair of F37 and vice president of government and industry affairs for the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA), said the event is historic because the FAA has accepted industry-developed standards instead of federal regulatory standards.

F37 organized in 2002 to respond to the FAA’s call for the recreational aircraft industry to develop consensus standards; the committee includes active FAA representation as well as all interested stakeholders – light sport aircraft and parts manufacturers, instructors, user groups, pilots, and regulatory representatives. More than 200 members of this multinational initiative have dedicated a great deal of time to this process.

The ASTM committee quickly formulated a structure, drafted bylaws, and began work facilitated by virtual meetings to accelerate their standards development activities. As a result, F37 has a portfolio of 20 approved standards and over a half-dozen drafts in development. Some F37 subcommittees have met for more than two hours each week to ensure that issues related to work items would be resolved, redrafting would proceed efficiently, and work would progress. In addition, the entire committee would meet virtually on occasion, as did committee leadership to coordinate their agenda. “F37’s accelerated birth and growth is a testimony to the use of virtual meetings as a means to persistently work through the consensus process,” said Dan Schultz, ASTM staff manager for F37. “ASTM has the tools in place so that committees may respond efficiently and effectively to marketplace needs.”

Elizabeth Cory, FAA deputy, public affairs, Great Lakes and Central Regions, notes that the effort grows out of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act of 1995 and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular A-119, both of which state that government should use consensus standards. She adds, “Accepting the ASTM standards demonstrates the FAA’s role as a partner with industry and the public in developing and implementing the use of consensus standards for the LSA community.”

F37 continues work on a maintenance manual standard for all LSA aircraft and the wing interface standard for powered parachutes. Subcommittees also continue to develop other standards for glider, gyroplane, lighter-than- air, and weight-shift control aircraft.

For more information about F37 and its standards development work, contact Daniel Schultz, ASTM International (phone: 610/832-9716). //

On April 1, delegates of the Chinese Industry Association for Antimicrobial Materials and Products (CIAA) visited ASTM International Headquarters. The delegates represented research organizations and testing centers for antimicrobial materials companies in China. The CIAA, founded in October 2002, includes 200 members from Chinese-based companies that produce antimicrobial materials and related products. It is a trans-regional organization that has formulated a series of business and national standards for items such as antimicrobial plastic, antimicrobial ceramics, antimicrobial textiles, and antimicrobial building materials. The delegates visited ASTM to learn about ASTM International and Committee G03 on Weathering and Durability, as well as information specific to ASTM's collaboration with Chinese organizations and the China Standards and Conformity Assessment office located in Beijing, China (with which ASTM International is a partner). The second part of the visit included a tour of the Rohm & Haas laboratories located in Springhouse, Pa., where the group was able to discuss technical issues related to G03.04's G 21, Standard Practice for Measuring Resistance of Synthetic Polymeric Materials to Fungi.

ASTM Joins ANSI and Other SDOs in Signing Technical Cooperative Agreements with NATO

ASTM International joined the American National Standards Institute and SAE International in March to sign a technical cooperative agreement with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Standardization Agency to support the mutual value of cooperating in all fields of standardization. The agreements signal the formal beginnings of technical cooperation that will enhance interoperability, lower costs, and improve efficiencies.

The agreements mean that:

• Programs of planned work and standardization priorities will be shared in both directions between NATO partners and civil standards organizations;
• NATO partners will be welcome to participate in technical committees to help shape standards that may become the basis for standardization agreements; and
• Civil standards organizations will facilitate the adoption of their standards through cooperative coordination agreements.

The NSA is an independent NATO agency whose mission is to initiate, coordinate, support and administer standardization activities conducted under the authority of the NATO Committee for Standardization. Standardization is defined within NATO as the process of developing concepts, doctrines, procedures and designs to achieve and maintain the most effective levels of compatibility, interchangeability and commonality in the operational, procedural, materiel, technical and administrative fields. The primary products of this process have been Standardization Agreements (STANAGs) between member nations.

In March 2004 NATO adopted a framework for the use of civil standards in lieu of NATO STANAGs. NSA began to explore appropriate ways to implement this framework, which included signing Technical Cooperative Agreements with partners at the European Committee for Standardization, the European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardization, and the European Telecommunications Standards Institute. The new agreement that NATO has signed with ANSI, ASTM International and SAE International represents the next step in implementation of the framework as NATO and the NSA begin to develop cooperation agreements with U.S.-based civil standards bodies, especially those few that develop standards that are adopted for use in significant numbers by the U.S. Department of Defense. //

Committees on Concrete and Cement Conduct Virtual Meetings

Two ASTM International subcommittees conducted virtual meetings in early April to give participants in South American countries the opportunity to contribute to current standards activities. The meetings were part of an ongoing joint effort of ASTM Committees C01 on Cement and C09 on Concrete and Concrete Aggregates to advance international participation in the standards development process.

Subcommittee C09.47 on Self-Consolidating Concrete held its meeting with 14 participants in Colombia, Argentina, and Chile on April 6. Martin Vachon, chair of Subcommittee C09.47, participated from his office in Ohio. Participants discussed changes to a current draft standard on self-consolidating concrete.

Two days later, Subcommittee C09. 20 had a virtual meeting in which eight participants from Colombia and Chile discussed the latest proposed revision to ASTM standard C 33, Specification for Concrete Aggregates. Robin Graves, C09.20 chair, joined the meeting from his office in Alabama.

Both virtual meetings were facilitated at ASTM Headquarters by Jim Olshefsky, ASTM director of committee services. Jessica Hychalk, manager, global cooperation, ASTM, made a presentation in Spanish on the standards balloting process, as well as introductions, for both meetings. Olshefsky said that participants reacted positively and felt that a positive exchange of information occurred through both meetings.

For more information on conducting a virtual meeting, contact Jim Olshefsky, ASTM (phone: 610/832-9714). //

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