International standards (ISO)

The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is an independent, non-governmental international organization, developing International Standards.


New EN ISO Standard on Air Filtration- approved

A new global Standard EN-ISO 16980-1 "Air filters for general ventilation -- Part 1: Technical specifications, requirements and classification system based upon particulate matter efficiency (ePM)” which will replace the existing European Standard EN 779, has been subject to national position balloting. No negative votes have been cast, and this also means final approval of the new EN ISO Standard. It is estimated that the new Standard will be officially published in spring 2017.

The filter classification is going to change once again, also the test method is subject to changes. The classification will give some more information about the removal of different particle sizes and also possibilities to better estimate the long-time performance of air filters. Also the filter class symbols will completely change, this may cause confusion in practice when published. Also the REHVA Guidebook 11 on Air Filtration will need a revision.

ISO main features

  • established in 1946;
  • 162 members with global coverage (see the ISO members);
  • ISO members are not obliged to adopt ISO standards.

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ISO standard preparation process

In ISO, the preparation process is somewhat different than in CEN: 

  • There is a three-phase voting: First Committee Draft (ISO/CD), then Draft International Standard (ISO/DIS) and finally Final Draft International Standard (ISO/FDIS).
  • Only those countries who have registered as active members ("P-members") for the relevant TC are allowed to vote.
  • Each P-member has one vote. At the final voting, at least 75% of the votes must be positive.
  • Adoption of ISO standards as national standards is completely voluntary.

Participating in the standardization process

ISO standards are developed by groups of experts, representatives of industry, NGOs, governments and other stakeholders, who are put forward by ISO's members.

ISO's full members (member bodies) can decide if they would like to be a participating member (P-member) of a particular Technical Committee (TC) or an observing member (O-member).

P-members participate actively in the work and have an obligation to vote on all questions submitted to vote within the technical committee.

O-members follow the work as an observer, but cannot make any comments about the development process or vote.

Correspondent members can become O-members of a particular technical committee.

EN-ISO standards

A standard originally prepared by an ISO/TC can be adopted, without changing its contents, as European Standard – or ISO can adopt a European Standard as an International Standard as well.

In both cases the standard becomes an EN ISO standard.

The same happens when a completely new standard is prepared under the Vienna Agreement, which since 1991 has called for the joint CEN-ISO planning of new standards.

International Standards
Elaboration of standards in parallel under the Vienna Agreement