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Assisting with Official Interpretations of Standards

Thu, 10 June, 2021

TWI’s welding standards expert, Marcello Consonni has been recently involved in the preparation and submission of requests for interpretation to ASME and ISO standard committees. Both requests were resolved successfully within three months - a “record” timescale for official interpretations!

ISO interpretation

The request for an official interpretation was submitted by a fabricator to BSI, following a discussion between the fabricator and their end client regarding the deployment of multiple welders qualified to BS EN ISO 9606-1 to complete a single welded joint. As a WEE/36 committee member, Marcello volunteered to assist the standard user with drafting the request in the required ISO format.

BSI then put the request forward to the relevant ISO Committee (ISO/TC44/SC11) for discussion. Marcello attended the ISO committee meeting where the request was discussed and was instrumental in clarifying the enquiry and putting the fabricator’s arguments forwards to the committee members. The committee agreed on an official answer, which was also satisfactory to the fabricator. The official answer will be published by ISO in due course.

The standard user commented, ‘It was made very easy by yourself [Marcello] and [BSI representative] and being in direct contact with yourself helped with moving it on faster. I have learned a lot from it and would not hesitate in doing it again in the future for both EN and ASME interpretations.’

ASME interpretation

The second request concerned Section XI of the ASME Boiler & Pressure Vessel Code (ASME BPV), for in-service inspection of nuclear power plant components. Marcello, a long-standing contributing member to the ASME Section IX Committee (welding qualifications), used his knowledge of the workings of ASME committees to help a code user draft the request for interpretation in a suitable format and style.

Marcello then contacted ASME on behalf of the code user and arranged for both to attend the committee meeting where the request was to be discussed (ASME Committee meetings are open to the public). The Section XI Committee agreed on a response and the official interpretation was published shortly after the meeting.

In the words of the code user, ‘The fact that the ASME inquiry was handled so efficiently was largely due Marcello’s support and relevant experience of the ASME process through sitting on a different ASME committee.’

How to submit requests for interpretation

TWI’s experts sit on 100+ national and international standardisation committees and can assist our Industrial Members in drafting, submitting and putting forward request for interpretations, as well as in identifying the relevant committee. The process to submit requests to the most common welding standard development organisations is explained below:

ISO standard users should direct requests for official interpretation to the Secretariat of the corresponding ISO Committee, via their national standards body (e.g. BSI in the UK). A complete listing of these bodies can be found at

The ISO template for interpretation requests, as well as answers to previous interpretations on welding standards, are available at:

ASME code users should submit requests for interpretation directly via the ASME website: Previous interpretations can be searched at:

AWS standard users should refer to the Informative Annex, Guidelines for the Preparation of Technical Inquiries, within the relevant standard. Previous interpretations can be searched at:

For more information please email: