New markets will soon open and existing markets will broaden for the pultruded fiber reinforced polymer (FRP) composites industry with the publication of a new document entitled, “Pre-Standard for Load & Resistance Factor Design (LRFD) of Pultruded Fiber Reinforced Polymer (FRP) Structures,”funded through the American Composites Manufacturers Association (ACMA).

This $1.4 million program has been in development for 3 years in collaboration with the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) and will now go through an ANSI standards process through ASCE before being adopted as a national standard. This is an important milestone in a long-range initiative by ACMA to create standards for the use of composite materials to increase their use throughout affiliated industries.

“We commend the visionary member companies that recognized the opportunities that LRFD standards would create for the industry and we look forward to a time when composite materials are an integral part of every building constructed in the US,” said ACMA President Monty Felix. “Ultimately, the American public will benefit from the increased use of reliable, durable composite materials in their homes and workplace.”

This standard will allow FRP composites to compete on a level playing field with other construction materials, like concrete, steel, wood and aluminum. Performance criteria for design, specification and installation will mean a higher degree of confidence for the professional designing with and specifying FRP composites, the contractor installing FRP composites, the owner purchasing FRP composites and the building code official inspecting the construction.

“ACMA was proud to partner with the ASCE in this momentous undertaking. The expert knowledge provided by the chapter authors and the participation of their respected members was integral to the success of the project. Developing LFRD standards is just one way ACMA is living its mission to develop and enhance shared opportunities for the industry and to promote the development and expansion of markets for composite products. The combined strength of ACMA’s member companies working toward a common goal allows ACMA to achieve what individuals, no matter how committed, cannot,” says Felix.