Engineered Systems Magazine

Terminology update: ASHRAEwiki launches

May 19, 2012

standardsimage300.jpgCommon definitions for terms found in ASHRAE standards and other publications can now be found at a new website from the Society.

The free ASHRAEwiki is located at www.ashraewiki.org and contains over 6,000 terms related to buildings with a particular focus on mechanical, envelope, electrical, lighting, load calculations, design, water design/conservation, and energy use and measurement metrics.

“Common terminology in communications and particularly in standards helps users in their understanding, thus encouraging adoption and use,” Art Hallstrom, a member of ASHRAE Technical Committee 1.6, Terminology, said. “The ASHRAEwiki goal is to improve communication by encouraging the use of consistent terminology definitions within ASHRAE and the industry, worldwide.”

The new ASHRAEwiki can create custom reports of terms and primary definitions that will aid in the development of standards, guidelines, Handbooks and other ASHRAE publications. With time, it may have broader use across the industry, according to Hallstrom.

Each term in the wiki has one or more primary (recommended) definitions, in which ASHRAE standard(s) the term is used, the definition source and known legal information such as trademark registration. The wiki also lists any secondary definitions used in an ASHRAE standard or guideline, which will help with the development of consistent standards.

“There is no requirement to use an ASHRAEwiki primary definition, but standards developers should be able to see the value in consistency across all standards,” Hallstrom said.

ASHRAEwiki terms are grouped by words, symbols, abbreviations and acronyms. Definitions that include units may use Inch-Pound (I-P) or International System (SI) as primary units. ASHRAEwiki is in English but might be expanded to other languages in the future.

“ASHRAEwiki content is controlled by the ASHRAEwiki editors and TC 1.6 but suggestions from individuals or organizations are welcome,” Bruce Billedeaux, TC 1.6 vice chair, said. “Suggestions can be entered in the wiki discussion section or sent to the ASHRAEwiki editor.”

ASHRAEwiki replaces a proposed ASHRAE Standard, Standard 166P, Heating, Ventilating, Air-Conditioning and Refrigerating Terminology, which had been proposed to offer uniform terminology for use in the HVAC&R industry.