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1.1 This practice provides a guide for the criteria to be used in the evaluation of testing laboratories and organizations engaged in examination and inspection, or both, for specification-conformance of steel, stainless steel, and related alloys.

1.2 This practice is intended for use by an accrediting authority for qualification and accreditation of laboratories and organizations noted in 1.1.

1.3 These criteria include the general characteristics (generic criteria) or organization, facility, human resources, and the necessary controls, for evaluating the ability of testing laboratories, examination organizations, and inspection organizations, to perform their intended functions.

1.4 These criteria also include specific criteria for equipment and personnel qualification, and for necessary quality control procedures, for evaluating the ability of testing laboratories, examination organizations, and inspection organizations to perform specific tests, examinations, and inspections.

1.4.1 If required, the appropriate ASTM Committee A-1 Subcommittee concerned with a particular test, examination, or inspection discipline may supplement this standard with additional specific criteria. See Table 1.

1.5 This practice may not necessarily provide all the generic criteria for the evaluation of independent testing, examination, and inspection agencies as defined in Practice E548. However, the generic and specific criteria of this standard, including any supplements, are considered appropriate for the evaluation of any testing laboratory or inspection and examination organizations, or both involve in specification conformance (or verification) testing and inspection of steel, stainless steel and related alloys.

1.6 These generic and specific criteria may, where appropriate, be used by an accrediting authority for evaluating the capabilities of a laboratory, examination organization, or inspection organization to perform tests, examinations, or inspections of steel products not related to specification conformance.

1.7 This standard practice may also be employed as an evaluation guideline for individual, governmental, or technical society self-certification programs where accreditation may not be required.