June Workshop Focuses on BFRs in Environment
National Institute of Standards and Technology
(NIST) will host the Seventh Annual Workshop
on Brominated Flame Retardants (BFRs) in the
Environment on June 13 and 14 , 2005, at the
NIST laboratories in Gaithersburg, Md. For years,
BFRs have been added to consumer products ranging
from carpets and cushions to computers and appliances
because they can reduce flame sprawl and provide
more time for people to escape.
claim about 3,600 lives annually in the United
States and cause an additional $10 billion in
direct property loss. However, concerns have
grown over the possible toxic effects of these
compounds as they leach out into the environment.
Some types of BFRs have been implicated in developmental,
reproductive, neurotoxic and thyroid effects
in rats, mice and fish and may be carcinogenic.
Recently, the European Union issued a directive
prohibiting use of two specific types of BFRs,
referred to as pentaBDE and octaBDE, in consumer
June workshop will include presentations on
current work in human exposure to BFRs, their
use in consumer products, improved analytical
methods, toxicology and their presence in the
environment. Dr. Andreas Sjöjin of the
Centers for Disease Control and Dr. Robert Letcher
of the National Wildlife Research Center will
give keynote addresses.
interested in covering this meeting should contact
Michael Baum, firstname.lastname@example.org,
Slated to Discuss Structural Steel and Fire
World Trade Center (WTC) terrorist attacks on
Sept. 11, 2001, showed the critical importance
of fire resistant materials for structural steel.
To accelerate technological advances in this
area, the National Institute of Standards and
Technology (NIST) will host a meeting to evaluate
industry interest in the creation of a NIST/industry
consortium on the materials science of fire
resistive materials for structural steel. The
meeting will be July 14, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., at
NIST's Gaithersburg, Md., campus.
meeting will explore possible goals and the
initial scope of work for the consortium. Expected
goals include the development of measurement
methods for the thermal and adhesive properties
of fire-resistive materials, tools for the characterization
of their three-dimensional microstructure and
linkages between microstructure and performance
Shyam Sunder, lead investigator of NIST's building
and fire safety investigation of the WTC collapses,
will report on insights learned relevant to
fire-resistive materials for structural steel.
Attendees also will review NIST efforts to accurately
predict performance of fire-resistant materials
with laboratory measurements. A tour of NIST
laboratory facilities is planned.
for the free meeting is required. For further
information, see http://ciks.cbt.nist.gov/bentz/FRMconsortium.html
or contact Dale Bentz at (301) 975-5865 or at
Reporters interested in attending should contact
John Blair, (301) 975-4261 or at email@example.com.
Baldrige Winners' Applications Available
the overall frozen baked goods industry has
remained relatively flat, sales for The Bama
Companies have increased 72 percent; total revenue
has grown from $123 million in 1999 to $211
million in 2004. Small manufacturer Texas Nameplate
Company used innovative processes and new technology
to decrease cycle time by 50 percent and increase
profits by 40 percent. For the past several
years, Kenneth W. Monfort College of Business
has scored in the top 1 percent for overall
student satisfaction and has been above the
90th percentile nationally for academic rigor.
Over the past five years, Robert Wood Johnson
University Hospital Hamilton has steadily improved
its market share, especially in the areas of
cardiology and oncology. The hospital's retention
rate for nurses is at 99 percent.
learn more about the outstanding results and
innovative practices that earned these four
organizations the 2004 Malcolm Baldrige National
Quality Award, see their recently released award
application summaries at http://baldrige.nist.gov/2004_Application_Summaries.htm.
Baldrige Award recognizes organizations in manufacturing,
small business, service, education and health
care for their performance excellence and quality
achievements. For more information, see http://baldrige.nist.gov/.
Withdraws Outdated Data Encryption Standard
of Commerce Carlos Gutierrez recently approved
the withdrawal of the Data Encryption Standard
(Federal Information Processing Standard 46-3)
and two related standards that provide for the
implementation and operation of the DES. Adopted
in 1977 for federal agencies to use in protecting
sensitive, unclassified information, the DES
is being withdrawn because it no longer provides
the security that is needed to protect federal
agencies are encouraged to use the Advanced
Encryption Standard, a faster and stronger algorithm
approved as FIPS 197 in 2001. For more information,