Did You Know....
The first American Standard Safety Code was approved in 1921 and covered the protection of the head and eyes of industrial workers.
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The Impact of Standards on Business and Industry

Roughly 80% of global merchandise trade is affected by standards and by regulations that embody standards. This means standardization affects virtually all products and services used or traded by the U.S. while also providing the nation industrial base with opportunities to influence international markets.

Standards and conformity assessment programs play a key role in the transfer of technology, from the research and development stage, to production, and ultimately to a product's success in the marketplace. Strategic utilization of these programs can simplify product development, reduce unnecessary duplication, lower costs, increase productivity, ensure safety, permit interchangeability, compatibility, and interoperability, enhance the acceptance of new products, maintain uniformity in product quality and much more.

By being part of the standards development process, industry representatives help to shape a standard so that the finished document meets their individual needs, as well as the needs of any customers they may have.

Industry participation in the standards development process, for example, can seat company representatives at the same table with their customers. Identifying customer requirements early makes it easier to plan and integrate necessary design changes. This is also much more economical than trying to retrofit a product (and its manufacturing process) after a standard is approved.

Did you know . . .

Standards development in the United States began more than a hundred years ago. In the early 1900s, focus shifted to a more formal approach for avoiding duplication, waste and conflict date.

In 1916 the American Institute of Electrical Engineers (now IEEE) invited the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), American Institute of Mining and Metallurgical Engineers (AIMME) and the American Society for Testing Materials (ASTM) to join in establishing a national body to coordinate standards development and to serve as a clearinghouse for the work of standards developing agencies. That organization eventually came to be known as the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).

Today, standards are developed by hundreds of professional and technical organizations representing a wide variety of industries including aerospace, civil engineering, telecommunications, and transportation.

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Field trips for this lesson:

With the dawn of the Industrial Age, increased attention was given to efforts that would help to protect the safety of consumers and workers.

The first version of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code was written in 1914 in response to an escalating number of dangerous boiler explosions. [more]

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