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November/December 2008

Committee Approves Its First Test Method

ASTM International Committee F40 on Declarable Substances in Materials has approved its first test method, F2617, Test Method for Identification and Quantification of Chromium, Bromine, Cadmium, Mercury and Lead in Polymeric Material Using Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectrometry. Under the jurisdiction of Subcommittee F40.01 on Test Methods, F 2617 describes a method for screening and quantifying the amount of elements in polymers that are subsequently used in the creation of consumer products. According to Taco van der Maten, PANalytical B.V., and vice chair, Committee F40, F2617 provides a practical approach for testing that will ensure compliance with several RoHS directives, which started with European Union legislation, and were followed shortly by several other RoHS-like regulations around the world that call for the restriction of the use of certain hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment.

F2617 focuses on raw materials used in early stages of polymer production but does not exclude polymer end products. “When the beginning of the production process is safe, it’s logical that when you get to the end of the process, the finished product will be safe,” says van der Maten, who also points out that internationally accepted reference materials were used in the development of F2617.

Subcommittee F40.01 welcomes participation from all interested parties in its standards development activities. An interlaboratory study of F2617 is currently in the works.


Technical Information: Taco van der Maten, PANalytical B.V., Almelo, The Netherlands

Phone: +011-31-54-653-4444

ASTM Staff: Brynn Murphy

Phone: 610-832-9640