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In this Edition

Executive report

It’s been a very big month for us at Standards Australia.

We started the month with the graduation of our 2018/19 NEXTgen cohort. This is an excellent achievement for the team as they have spent the past year engrossed with national and international standards processes.

As they move onward and upward from this program, we wish them all the best and look forward to seeing their continued involvement in standards development.

NEXTgen is a big part of the future of standards in Australia. If you know of any emerging experts, encourage them to apply to the NEXTgen Contributors Program and IEC Young Professionals Programme as both are now open for 2019/20.

I also had the pleasure last night, along with our Board and Senior Leadership Team, to recognise our 2019 Standards Awards winners. It was truly an honour to spend the evening with our Award winners and not only to recognise their achievements, but to take time out to thank them for their service to the citizens of Australia and the world. I would encourage you if you have 5 minutes to read the citations on the 2019 winners page.

To cap off our big news for the month, we were pleased to announce our first new distribution arrangement with Techstreet, a Clarivate Analytics company. This is an exciting step in improving access to Australian Standards. We have outlined more details about this new distributor below.

As I write, we are preparing for our Mid-Year Council meeting. In next month’s E-News I will provide an update on the conversations we have at our Council meeting, as well as on the progress of our collaboration with Techstreet.

—Adrian O’Connell, Acting Chief Executive Officer

And the winners are…

Pictured: Adrian O’Connell, Agnes Tan, Alan Snow, Colin Doyle, Gus Dannoun, Evan Wong, Patrick Hone and Richard Brooks. (Missing: Dr Philippa Ryan and Trevor Tucker)

The annual Standards Awards recognise standout members of the Australian standards development community and reward members of the community who make a positive impact and further the development of standards within Australia and internationally.

Standards Australia is honouring community members for leading the charge in reviewing, updating and developing standards that make the use of international best practice, new technology, and help to improve overall access standards.

Our 2019 Standards Awards winners are:

  • W.R Hebblewhite Medal – Colin Doyle
  • Meritorious Contribution Award (National) – Trevor Tucker
  • Meritorious Contribution Award (International) – Agnes Tan
  • Emerging Leader Award – Dr Philippa Ryan
  • Innovation Award – Evan Wong
  • Outstanding Committee Award – Fish Names Committee

Learn more about their achievements on the 2019 Award Winners page.

Outcomes from the lead in plumbing products forum

In conjunction with the Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB), Standards Australia recently hosted the Lead in Plumbing Products Forum. This forum was the next milestone in the journey towards reducing lead exposure in our environment and plumbing products. Facilitated by ABCB CEO Neil Savery, key stakeholders and technical experts gathered to share insights on:

  • Potential plumbing products impacted;
  • Options to reduce the allowable lead content in drinking water or plumbing products (that are contact with drinking water); and
  • The overall impact any change will have on industry.

The feedback from the forum will assist the ABCB in undertaking an impact analysis through the development of a regulatory impact statement. Following on from this forum, there will be further consultation to identify a range of feasible regulatory and non-regulatory options capable of addressing the health risks associated with lead in drinking water.

This is an important issue and the health and safety of the Australian community continues to be at the centre of all discussions. The participation at the forum demonstrated the commitment from industry, government and Standards Australia to work towards the future of the Plumbing Code of Australia, referenced standards and the importance of safe drinking water.

Techstreet appointed as additional distributor of content

Standards Australia has entered into a new distribution arrangement with Techstreet, a Clarivate Analytics company, to deliver greater access to content supporting innovation, safety and compliance in industries and communities across Australia.  

This new agreement means Techstreet will securely distribute Standard Australia’s content through a new webstore (soon to be available via the Standards Australia website) and the Techstreet Enterprise website for subscriptions.

Clarivate has served the standards community for more than 22 years, with more than 150 organisations responsible for publishing standards delivering content through its secure, easy-to-use platforms.

Read more in our media release.

Australian and International Standards continue to be available through SAI Global, in addition to Techstreet.

Standards Australia remains committed to an open and genuine process.

This exciting first phase move for us comes right before the commencement of our consultation on broader distribution policy that will commence in June 2019.

Drug testing methods get a revision to increase safety

Safety and reliability has taken front seat in a revised standard guiding the detection of drugs in oral fluids, aimed at improving onsite drug testing across several sectors of the economy.

Read more in our media release

In conversation with Dr. Jan Herrmann

Dr Jan Herrmann leads the Physical Metrology branch at the National Measurement Institute. The branch delivers world-class measurement standards, expert advice and a range of services for measurement of physical quantities to Australian industry, researchers, government and the community.

Like many of his colleagues, Jan contributes to the development of documentary standards, currently chairing Standards Australia Technical Committee NT-001, Nanotechnologies, and heading the Australian delegation to Technical Committee 229, Nanotechnologies, of the International Organization for Standardization.

Standards Australia: What is graphene?
Jan Herrmann: Graphene is a very exciting carbon material with very exciting characteristics. Most people know common carbon forms such as graphite, found in pencils, and diamonds. Graphene is a layer of carbon atoms bound together, looking like a sheet of very thin carpet. It is just one atom thick, and it has some amazing properties. It is the strongest compound and an excellent conductor of heat and electricity.

SA: Are there uses that have only recently been discovered?
JH: Graphene itself as a material is relatively new. It has only been able to be produced in the last 10 to 15 years, so every use of it is new. Graphene has quite amazing electrical, mechanical and optical properties, and scientists and engineers will continue to make use of these properties. Be prepared for many new uses to be discovered in the future.

SA: Where would people be able to see it the most?
JH: A short answer, you have not seen it very much…yet. But it is coming, and you will see it in products where we can make use of the unique properties of this material.

An example that people will be able to see in the future is incorporating graphene into real carpet and floor coverings. The graphene along with some wiring and software, will act as sensors. Detecting where people are located on the floor. Why would this be handy? If you are in an office, the sensors can detect who is in the room and can turn on or off the lights, turning the workplace into smarter, more energy efficient space. While some of this is already possible with existing technology, it can be very complex. Graphene will make this much easier to achieve.

SA: Are there many standards in this area at the moment?
JH: We are seeing the first set of standards coming out now with ISO/TC 229 and IEC TC 113.

Initially, the focus is on terminology and on determining fundamental properties. Materials specification and application-focused standards are needed as graphene-based products become more complex, and it is increasingly more important to reach consensus on relevant terminology and industry relevant materials specifications.

SA: What will developing standards around graphene achieve?
JH: It will be the same benefits seen with any other material when they’re standardised. It will build product confidence within the industry and for buyers and sellers who need to agree on a specified performance.  By standardising the characteristics of graphene, it establishes a benchmark for quality and performance requirements.

SA: Who will benefit from this the most?
JH: Like any other material, it will be the manufacturer’s and industry users to begin with, then as graphene becomes more incorporated into everyday life, the consumers will then be the beneficiaries.  The future of graphene will provide many exciting opportunities, such as for smarter cities. For example, using graphene within the surface of the roads to trigger the traffic light system. This can be used to tally the traffic on busy roads, or to help design bridges with traffic volume and load. And there will be applications we cannot even imagine today.

Workshop: How to write an Australian Standard

The Learning and Development team at Standards Australia are running free comprehensive workshops on the art of writing an Australian Standard.

These workshops will take place all over Australia and cover the principles of writing clear, performance-based standards, with exercises in-class to delve further into some of the finer points of drafting. With the goal of becoming a more confident contributor to your committee's projects.

This workshop promotes an understanding of the:

  • Expressions and language used within an Australian Standard.
  • Drafting of specific clauses within an Australian Standard.
  • Referencing styles and formats.
  • Appendices.
  • Amendments.
  • International adoptions.

If you are interested in learning or expanding your knowledge of writing a standard, head to the Standards Academy website to find out the date of your nearest workshop.

  1. Login into Standards Academy
  2. Click “Workshops" in the top menu
  3. Look for the course titled “Workshop – How to Write an Australian Standard” and click the Register button next to the session you wish to attend.

If you have any additional questions, please contact us at

Refreshed public comment platform

Late last year, Standards Australia piloted a brand-new Public Comment platform, using AS 4632, Over-pressure and under-pressure shut-off devices, as the draft standard. The platform was created in an effort to improve the public comment phase of developing a standard.

The feedback received from the pilot was very much appreciated and our team has worked hard to enhance the platform. This modified version of the platform is now trialling the below draft standards.

  • DR AS/NZS 4114, Spray painting booths, designated spray-painting areas and paint mixing rooms
  • DR AS 3962, Guidelines for design of marinas
  • DR SG-008, Committee Dispute Avoidance & Resolution (from 31 May)
  • DR AS/NZS 2280, Ductile iron pipes and fittings (coming soon)
  • DR AS 4793, Mechanical tapping bands for waterworks purposes (coming soon)

The enhancements include:

  • Single sign on, matching other Standards Australia applications.
  • Attaching supporting documents along with your comment.
  • View and print full document.

If you haven't yet tried the new platform, we encourage you to do so. Public comment is an integral part of the standards development process. We want to hear from you about this new platform, working together to create an easy, user friendly public comment portal.

Let us know how it works for you by emailing or by taking this quick survey.  

Commissioning fee for AS/NZS IDTs waived – pilot extended

For the past year, Standards Australia and Standards New Zealand have been trialling a pilot where the commissioning fees for joint standards development projects for the Identical (IDT) Adoption of ISO and IEC Standards have been waived.

Due to the benefits realised and the positive feedback received from stakeholders during this pilot, Standards Australia and Standards New Zealand have agreed to extend this pilot for a further 12 months.  

The pilot will be reassessed in May 2020.

Read more in our statement.

Draft rules for dispute avoidance and conflict resolution open for public consultation

Standards Australia have developed the Committee Dispute Avoidance and Resolution Standardisation Guide (SG-008) which aims to address a key finding in the Technical Governance Review (TGR).

This new guide provides strategies for minimising, and where possible avoiding, disputes that prevent consensus from being achieved between committee members. The guide also lays out the framework for proactively and effectively resolving disputes that could not be avoided, through the use of collaborative problem-solving techniques.

Standards Australia invites you to provide feedback on this draft Standardisation Guide. The 4-week public consultation period starts on Friday 31 May 2019 and ends on Sunday 30 June 2019.

The draft will be available for comment during this period from our Public Comment portal.

You will need to have a registered Standards Australia public account to access and comment on this draft. Instructions on how to register and submit comments are available on the Public Comment portal.

If you have any questions, please contact our Standards Information Service team via any of the methods on the contact us page on our website.

International update

Standards Australia represents Australia on the two major international standards development bodies, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). Our activities are reported on our International Updates page.

Highlights from May (PDF):

  • WTO Report sheds light on impact of digital technologies on global value chains
  • New International Standard for measuring the performance of cities going “smart”
  • New technical committee ensures the safety of Personal e-Transporters

Sector update

Access the latest standards development news in your industry sector via our Sectors page.

Drafts open for comment

The public comment process provides an opportunity for stakeholders and members of the public to make valuable contributions. View draft standards currently open for comment.

PEFC standards open for public comment

A 60-day public consultation on the draft revised Program for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC) chain of custody and trademark standards opened on May 10.

Until July 9, comments and proposals by stakeholders on these two documents can be submitted on the PEFC consultation website.

An invitation for this consultation is published on, which will also include links to register for a public webinar on the proposed changes, their background and next steps in the standard revision/development. The webinar is offered on three separate dates:

  • May 29 at 14.00;
  • June 3 at 11.00 and;
  • July 3 at 11.00 (central Europe summer time).

The PEFC is the world’s largest forest certification scheme with more than 300 million ha certified globally. The governing body in Australia is Responsible Wood. Visit

Public consultation has commenced on AS 5301

The Fisheries Research and Development Corporation (FRDC) is developing an Australian Standard for Aquatic Plant Names.This is a new standard and will determine the approved names to be used for aquatic plants including seaweeds, algae and many more, that are used in Australia for human consumption.

An industry workshop was held in late 2018 to determine the list of candidate names. This list has been refined and the final list is now being circulated for public comment.

An online feedback form has been developed which is available from the following link.

The standard will be limited to the edible commercial aquatic plants in Australia including imported and exported plants and as such, for the purpose of this standard, the following definitions apply:

  • Aquatic plants are defined as plants used commercially as a source of food, therapeutics derivatives and additives, that naturally require saltwater or freshwater habitats for growth.
  • Plants are defined as vascular plants, protists and photosynthetic prokaryotes.
  • Saltwater habitats are defined as marine and brackish waters up to the highest astronomical tide.
  • Freshwater habitats are defined as temporary and permanent inland water bodies.

The final standard including the approved names will be developed as an industry workshop and the SRB based on the feedback received through this consultation process.  For further information, contact Meaghan Dodd:

Alan Snow: