ANSI - American National Standards Institute
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Voluntary Standards Cover the Spectrum:

From Beachwear to Nuclear Power Plants

New York, May 23, 2002

Like the steady pulse of a heartbeat that performs an invaluable task for the human body involuntarily, voluntary standards secure the reliable function of the home and workplace without the average citizen's awareness.

In an effort to communicate the vital role that standards play in daily life, ANSI Online News will publish on an ongoing basis a series of snapshots of the diverse standards initiatives undertaken in the global and national standards arena, many of which are performed by ANSI members and ANSI-accredited standards developers. Here are two of the latest selections:

Beach Wear

As summer moves in and temperatures begin to rise, active people will soon be flocking to beaches and pools by the thousands for a little fun in the sun. This kind of activity requires comfortable clothes that are strong enough to handle the effects of sand, wind, and water. To ensure that summer clothes can withstand the rough and tough horseplay of big and little boys, last year the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) approved D4154-01 Standard Performance Specification for Men's and Boy's Knitted and Woven Beachwear and Sports Shirt Fabrics. The standard deals with the durability and performance of the knitted and woven fabrics comprised of textile fibers used in men's and boy's beachwear and sports shirts. Also approved last year by ASTM, an ANSI member and ANSI-accredited standards developer, is D4156-01 Standard Performance Specification for Women's and Girls' Knitted Sportswear Fabric, which specifies the performance standards for fabrics used to make women's and girls sportswear, because big and little girls need comfortable and durable clothes, too.

For more information and other tips on how to stay safe this summer, check out the National Safety Council's "June is National Safety Month" campaign at:

Nuclear Power Plants

Within the past year, there has been substantial news coverage as well as public debate over concerns dealing with nuclear radiation and the safety of nuclear power plants. For example, many question whether or not the Indian Point Nuclear Facility in New York State should be shut down after a nuclear reactor accident in early 2000 caused hundreds of gallons of radiation-contaminated water to leak into the Hudson River and into the town's local water system. In order to prevent accidents like this from occurring again, the American Society for Mechanical Engineers (ASME), in collaboration with the American Nuclear Society (ANS), both ANSI members and ANSI-accredited standards developers, approved ANSI/ASME RA-S-2002, Probabilistic Risk Assessment for Nuclear Power Plant Applications in April 2002. This new standard sets forth requirements for risk assessment in commercial nuclear power plants and provides a method for applying the requirement for specific applications. The standard uses risk assessment decision-making in order to deal with the design, licensing, procurement, construction, operation, and maintenance of the power plant. In addition, the standard requires and establishes analysis of the internal events of the plant while it is in operation.

This "standards snapshot" was made possible by the steady stream of press information disseminated by standards developing organizations to keep the ANSI Federation abreast of their achievements. As the Institute receives news of published voluntary standards and voluntary standards initiatives with broad appeal and impact, similar articles will be posted to the ANSI Online News page. Please continue to forward your updates to the Communications and Public Relations department at (f) 212.398.0023 or (e) For additional information on the wide array of standards applications, see the Media Tips and Case Studies section of the Institute's website.

ANSI Nanotechnology Standards Panel