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ASTM Standard addresses airborne ultrasound packaging tests.

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January 24, 2014 - Airborne ultrasound is one of the few solutions that nondestructively measures physical integrity and quality of flexible packaging seals. Technology described in ASTM F3004, Test Method for Evaluation of Seal Quality and Integrity Using Airborne Ultrasound, is used to image seals and evaluate variances across entire active seal area to ensure even temperature and pressure distribution during sealing process. It will be useful for manufacturers, regulatory bodies, and laboratories.

New ASTM Standard Provides Procedures for Airborne Ultrasound Packaging Tests

ASTM International
100 Barr Harbor Dr., Box C700
West Conshohocken, PA, 19428-2959

Press release date: January 17, 2014

W. CONSHOHOCKEN, Pa., —Proper packaging procedures are an important aspect of any industry. Now ASTM International Committee F02 on Flexible Barrier Packaging has developed a standard for a relatively new packaging technology, airborne ultrasound. ASTM F3004, Test Method for Evaluation of Seal Quality and Integrity Using Airborne Ultrasound, was developed by Subcommittee F02.40 on Package Integrity.

“Airborne ultrasound has been on the market for over a decade now and has a very specific niche in the flexible packaging industry,” says Oliver Stauffer, chief operating officer, PTI Inspection Systems, and an F02 member. “It is one of the few solutions that nondestructively measures the physical integrity and quality of a flexible packaging seal.”

According to Stauffer, medical device packaging requires a high level of seal integrity assurance. Typically, device manufacturers have used manual-visual inspection as the preferred test for porous barrier packaging. However, airborne ultrasound offers a faster and more reliable assessment of package seal quality based on a quantitative measure.

“Any flexible packaging operation that applies a final seal to a pouch can deploy an airborne ultrasound sensor on the line for high speed 100 percent seal quality assurance,” says Stauffer.

Airborne ultrasound sensors can be integrated into production lines or a stand-alone system and can be installed just after a seal station to confirm seal quality. The technology described in ASTM F3004 is used to image seals and evaluate variances across the entire active seal area to ensure even temperature and pressure distribution during the sealing process.

Stauffer says that manufacturers, regulatory bodies and laboratories will all find ASTM F3004 useful, especially as the shift is being made toward more quantitative test measurement solutions, particularly in the medical device industry.

All interested parties are invited to take part in the standards developing activities of F02.40. “ASTM F3004 may be further developed as sensory capabilities improve,” says Stauffer. “There are other measurement capabilities that the standard has yet to explore. As ASTM F3004 currently stands, it provides a huge stepping stone for those looking to provide nondestructive seal quality assurance.”

To purchase ASTM standards, visit  and search by the standard designation, or contact ASTM Customer Relations (phone: 877-909-ASTM;  ASTM International welcomes participation in the development of its standards. For more information on becoming an ASTM member, visit

ASTM International is one of the world’s largest development and delivery systems of standards and related products and services. ASTM International meets the World Trade Organization (WTO) principles for the development of international standards: coherence, consensus, development dimension, effectiveness, impartiality, openness, relevance and transparency. ASTM standards are accepted and used in research and development, product testing, quality systems and commercial transactions.

For more news in this sector, visit or follow us on Twitter @ASTMProductsRec.

ASTM Committee F02 Next Meeting: April 7-9, 2014, Lansing, Mich.
Technical Contact: Oliver Stauffer, PTI Inspection Systems, Tuckahoe, N.Y., Phone: 914-337-2005;  
ASTM Staff Contact: Diane Trinsey, Phone: 610-832-9661; 
ASTM PR Contact: Barbara Schindler, Phone: 610-832-9603;
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