ASTM's Proficiency Test Program provides laboratories with a testing program that enables labs to compare, improve, and maintain performance in preparing polypropylene test samples and in conducting mechanical property tests on them.
Conducted biannually, this program provides (for each test cycle) two different polypropylene resins, electronic report forms, and instructions for conducting the tests. Labs are instructed to prepare their samples in accord with specific ASTM and ISO standards. Labs then conduct tests in their facilities using the prepared specimens and the ASTM and ISO methods cited in ASTM D 4101 and ASTM D 5857, and record their test results on the data report forms. Each laboratory returns completed data report forms to ASTM for use in generating statistical summary reports. Published reports contain:
- Coded laboratory test results
- Statistical analysis of test data
- Charts plotting test results versus lab code
- Other information
Participants are required to utilize molds and molding equipment capable of producing injection molded specimens per ASTM D 4101 and/or ASTM D 5857. Companies with multiple molding machines or laboratories may elect to use one or all of their facilities however, each unit's data will be treated as an individual participant and as an annual subscriber to the testing program.
Samples, test instructions, and electronic report forms are distributed during the last week preceding the testing month. Labs have approximately one month to return test data to ASTM with final summary reports sent to participants approximately one month following receipt of test data.
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