For many of us, ASTM seems to be merely a set of rules, often byzantine in nature, that seem to establish business relations. While this is substantially true, the ASTM committees that establish product standards often do much more. Engineers and designers need to know how products will perform to assure and ensure their clients that structures will be safe.
For more than 100 years our concrete industry has been setting the standard for safety through its work on C09 on Concrete and Concrete Aggregates. One of ASTM’s largest committees, C09 members span the globe. The international involvement is the direct result of adoption of the C09 documents in building standards around the world.
For the past two years, I’ve been involved in helping to expand the internationality of World of Concrete. When I started this effort, I wasn’t convinced that we had much to offer to the world by promoting North American construction procedures.
I was wrong.
Due in part to ASTM’s strong product and testing standards, North American concrete construction techniques are help in great esteem by contractors around the world. Interest in World of Concrete – India and World of Concrete-Europe demonstrate contractors and producers want to learn more on how North Americans build with concrete.
But there is still more work ahead. At last month’s meeting. C09 Chair Steve Parker met with several ASTM members to discuss what’s in store for concrete in the next 25 years. In the last ten years, C09 committees have created standards for new products such as self-consolidating concrete, pervious concrete, and roller-compacted concrete. At this past meeting, C09 committees discussed evolving concepts such as polished concrete and new concrete additives.
As concrete construction reinvents itself in the next century, C09 members will meet the challenge and provide assurance that world’s most preferred building material will meet the challenges of serviceability, durability and safety.