Standard Active Last Updated: Feb 10, 2021
ASTM D5420-21

Standard Test Method for Impact Resistance of Flat, Rigid Plastic Specimen by Means of a Striker Impacted by a Falling Weight (Gardner Impact)

Significance and Use

5.1 Plastics are viscoelastic and it is possible that they are sensitive to changes in velocity of weights falling on their surfaces. However, the velocity of a free-falling object is a function of the square root of the drop height. A change of a factor of two in the drop height will cause a change of only 1.4 in velocity. Hagan, et al (2) found that the mean-failure energy of sheeting was constant at drop heights between 0.30 and 1.4 m. Different materials respond differently to changes in the velocity of impact.

5.2 The test conditions used in Geometry GA are the same as those used in Geometry FA of Test Method D5628 (see Table 1).

5.3 The test conditions of Geometry GB are equivalent to the geometry used for the Gardner Variable Height Impact Test (3).

5.4 The test conditions of Geometry GC cause a punch-shear type of failure because the support-plate hole is close to the diameter of the striker.

5.5 The test conditions of Geometry GD are the same as those in Test Method D3763.

5.6 The test conditions of Geometry GE are the same as those in Test Method D4226, impactor head configuration H.25.

5.7 Because of the nature of impact testing, the selection of a test method and striker must be somewhat arbitrary. Consider the end use environment and requirements when choosing from the available striker geometries. The selection of any one of the striker geometries is permitted.

Note 2: Material processing can have a significant affect on the development of a plastic's physical properties. Consult relevant material standards for processing guidelines


1.1 This test method covers the determination of the relative ranking of materials according to the energy required to crack or break flat, rigid plastic specimens under various specified conditions of impact of a striker impacted by a falling weight.

1.2 The values stated in SI units are to be regarded as the standard. The values given in parentheses are for information only.

1.3 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, health, and environmental practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.

Note 1: There is no known ISO equivalent to this standard.

1.4 This international standard was developed in accordance with internationally recognized principles on standardization established in the Decision on Principles for the Development of International Standards, Guides and Recommendations issued by the World Trade Organization Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) Committee.

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Book of Standards Volume: 08.03
Developed by Subcommittee: D20.10
Pages: 9
DOI: 10.1520/D5420-21
ICS Code: 83.140.10