By Evelyn Witterholt.
Construction and roofing industry members have likely run into products with ASTM standards and specifications. Almost every product you encounter will have an ASTM standard which comes from ASTM International, formerly American Society for Testing and Materials. If you’re new to the world of ASTM International standards and test methods, here’s what to know:
According to ASTM.org, “ASTM International is a globally recognized leader in the development and delivery of voluntary consensus standards.” As of today, over 12,000 standards are used internationally with more than 30,000 technical experts and professionals working tirelessly to set said standards. These specifications and their open consensus process amongst members are meant to improve the quality, safety and marketing of construction materials.
ASTM International prides itself on the collaborative process amongst its members to set standards for construction products. They believe in an open and accessible process for members to create these specifications and test methods, especially for their members outside of the United States. They set standards for multiple industries, including construction, petroleum, metal and other consumer products. If you are looking for a product specification, you can easily access the ASTM standard through their website, but will have to pay unless you are a member.
ASTM International members come from over 140 different countries. They all come from organizations in the product industries mentioned previously. Because product specifications and their test methods are created by these industry experts, many companies and institutions trust ASTM International. Members are grouped into technical committees depending on which industry they work in or have knowledge of and it’s these committees that set the ASTM standards.
There are four levels of ASTM International membership:
Participating members – These members are industry professionals and experts who chose to join ASTM International and they participate with technical committees directly.
Organizational members – These members join through organizations that support the process of ASTM International and usually designate one organization representative. These representatives may or may not join a technical committee but the organization still has access to benefits like a boosted company image and a listing in the ASTM Membership Directory.
Informational members – These members do not participate in technical committees but can get discounts on publications and workshops.
Student members – While students can’t participate in technical committees, they can still benefit from a student membership. Benefits include scholarship and publishing opportunities and free attendance to the ASTM Symposium.
One example of an industry professional that RoofersCoffeeShop® knows who is an ASTM International member is Hal Leland. Hal is Western Colloid’s general manager and serves on the board of directors for the Cool Roof Rating Council. It’s through this experience and on behalf of Western Colloid that Hal serves as a subcommittee chair and voting member at ASTM International.
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Evelyn works as a writer for RoofersCoffeeShop, MetalCoffeeShop and AskARoofer. When she isn’t writing about roofing, she’s either at the gym lifting weights or curled up on the couch watching a movie.
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