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Southwest Research Institute's Chemistry and Chemical Engineering Division achieves ISO 9002 certification

San Antonio -- May 1, 2001 -- The Southwest Research Institute® (SwRI®) Chemistry and Chemical Engineering Division recently earned ISO 9002 certification. ISO 9002 is a set of international standards used to certify a quality system for the development of products, starting with the initial design through production and servicing.

All four departments in the division Analytical and Environmental Chemistry; Environmental and Demilitarization Technology; Microcapsules, Coatings, and Polymers; and Fire Technology, are ISO certified. Each area tailored its quality assurance procedures to meet the required ISO certification elements.

"It is a great accomplishment for us to have all four of our departments meet the requirements for ISO certification," said Dr. Michael MacNaughton, vice president of the Chemistry and Chemical Engineering Division. "With this certification, clients will be assured that we are following an internationally, widely accepted quality assurance program."

The NSF International Strategic Registration, Ltd., (NSF-ISR) audited the division and issued the certification. The NSF-ISR carries more than 50 years of auditing and certification experience.

The division began working on meeting ISO 9002 standards about two years ago. A quality assurance committee was formed with representatives from each department, who met on a weekly basis. Each section and department in the division developed written standard operating procedures, test and analytical procedures, and quality project plans.

"The ISO program allows us to take a number of different quality systems and link them under one program," Jo Ann Boyd, manager of Quality Assurance in Chemistry, said. "We already had several quality systems in place, but they were all different. ISO gives us one overall quality plan to implement. This will be a great benefit to us and our customers."

Other ISO-certified areas at SwRI include the Automotive Products and Emissions Research Division, the Engine and Vehicle Research Division, the Signal Exploitation and Radiolocation Division, and the Bioengineering Department.

For more information, contact Tracey M.S. Whelan, (210) 522-2256 or fax (210) 522-3547.

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