ANSI - American National Standards Institute
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AIA Forms Strategic Standardization Forum for Aerospace


New York, Jan 28, 2005

The Executive Committee of the Aerospace Industries Association has approved the creation of the Strategic Standardization Forum for Aerospace, aimed at providing leadership, guiding activities, and addressing issues related to aerospace manufacturing standardization, officials said.

"The initiative to develop this forum comes at a time when America's aerospace and defense industry is facing strategic issues that will affect standards," AIA president and CEO John W. Douglass said. "It is an enormously positive step that companies have decided to work together on this effort."

The creation of the forum follows the release of the industry’s Report on the Future of Aerospace Standardization, one of the first follow-ups to the 2002 President’s Commission on the Future of the U.S. Aerospace Industry. The report examined standardization systems and processes, defined requirements to support future growth of the industry and made recommendations to create a standardization infrastructure.

In September 2003, AIA established the Future of Aerospace Standardization Working Group in to follow-up on the Commission’s findings and take an in-depth look at the current health of the aerospace standards. The Working Group examined the current aerospace standardization systems and processes, defined requirements for standards and standards systems that will support continued and future growth of the aerospace industry, and established a set of recommendations for ensuring the optimum standards infrastructure to carry the aerospace industry into the future.

The resulting report noted a lack of leadership in providing industry guidance on standards issues, leading to the idea to establish the forum. The document also identifies a number of emerging issues with the potential to seriously impact the standards systems and data. According to the report, an overly complex and often duplicative aerospace standards system has resulted in increased costs associated with harmonization of regulatory requirements, multiple conformity assessments and quality management audits, and redundant and overlapping standards.

"The report the industry team put together says it perfectly," said Boeing Senior Standards Specialist Laura Hitchcock, who will chair the new forum. "The aerospace industry spends a significant amount of money on standards. Managed well, it’s an investment; without management, it’s an expense"

Copies of the Future of Aerospace Standardization Report are available at www.aia-aerospace.org.

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