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ASTM International Subcommittee on Decontamination Announces Rapid Progress in Standards Development Efforts

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ASTM International Subcommittee E54.03 on Decontamination has entered a rapid standards development effort since meeting in Kansas City in June 2004. The subcommittee benefited greatly during the meeting from the participation of a broad spectrum of stakeholders that represented private industry, military entities, government agencies (for example, Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Homeland Security), standards groups (for example, National Institute of Standards and Technology) and emergency response teams. The involvement of the invited Missouri Civil Support Team, Weapons of Mass Destruction delegation, led by Captains T. Scott Zimmerman and Robert West, was especially helpful to the standards development group.

During the Kansas City meeting the subcommittee established a task group structure that organizes the standards development effort into four key areas:

E54.03.01 - Biological Agent Decontamination,

E54.03.02 - Chemical Agent Decontamination,

E54.03.03 - Radionuclide and Nuclear Decontamination, and

E54.03.04 - Mass Decontamination Operations.

Since the June meeting, the subcommittee has released four proposed new standards, focused in the biological decontamination area, for ballot. For more information on these biological decontamination standardization efforts, contact Jeff Owens, AFRL, the biological task group leader. The following biological decontamination-oriented work items are currently being considered for ballot:

WK6354 ­ Decontamination Factor Testing of Bacillus Using Suspension Method;

WK6355 Decontamination Factor Testing of Bacillus Using Coupon Method;

WK6376 Modification of E 2180, Standard Test Method for Determining the Activity of Incorporated Antimicrobial Agent(s) In Polymeric or Hydrophobic Materials; and

WK4789 Test Method for Quantitative Sporicidal Three-Step Method (TSM) to Determine Sporicidal Efficacy of Liquids and Vapor or Gases on Contaminated Carrier Surfaces.

Further information on these work items can be accessed on the ASTM Web site by entering a work item number in the site search box on the home page,

Additional standards are under development including WK5394, Nuclear Fixative Coating Performance Specification, and WK6350, Test Method for Determining the Decontamination Efficacy of Treatments for Removing Radionuclides from Building Surfaces. For more information on the Radiological and Nuclear Decontamination standards effort, please connect with the Task Group Leader, John Whitaker, Isotron Corp.

The task group leadership team met in Seattle, Wash., in November 2004, to accelerate the development effort of three work items that were recently sent to ballot. "We are aware that there is a desperate need among the civilian, military and emergency response community to standardize the analytical, equipment and operations aspects of decontamination. This team has stepped up to the plate and taken a very aggressive approach to seeing that this need is addressed expeditiously," says Christina Lomasney, Isotron Corp., who co-chairs the subcommittee with Craig Heimbach, NIST.

The January meeting in Atlanta focused on advancing the current ballot items through the standardization process. The chemical agent and mass decontamination teams, headed by Danny Heenan, Battelle, and Bill Davis, Davis Institute, worked to establish new work items that are already in development. The meeting hosted speakers to support the standard development efforts, including an international representative from the Czech Army’s decontamination standardization activity.

For further technical information, contact Christina Lomasney, Isotron Corporation, Seattle, Wash. (phone: 206/632-0713; Committee E54 meets June 13-15, in Reno, Nev., at ASTM Committee Week. For membership or meeting details, contact Pat Picariello, ASTM International (phone: 610/832-9720;


Release #7082