UNS Registration of Copper and Copper Alloys

The Unified Numbering System (UNS) of metals and alloys was developed by the American National Standards Institute(ANSI) in 1974 to uniformly number commercial metals and alloys in the United States. The administration of the UNS system is shared by SAE and ASTM. Presently, SAE is the primary administrator of the system. The power to administer registration of new copper alloys, as secretariat, was delegated to Copper Development Association Inc. when the system was developed in 1974.

The UNS Copper Alloy Registration & Advisory Committee (the Committee) will consist of at least five(5) metallurgists and technical specialists with known experience in copper and copper alloy metallurgy.  All selected Committee members will be expected to contribute as individuals on the basis of their technical expertise only, not as representatives of a particular company or commercial interest.

The Committee will meet semi-annually, usually in late spring and late fall and generally by teleconference. Committee meetings will be open to any interested party to attend as an observer, however only Committee members will be entitled to be heard during discussion and deliberation. Any party wishing to submit comments on Committee agenda items shall submit their comments in writing to the UNS Copper Alloy Registration & Advisory Committee at least 3 weeks prior to the meeting date. Committee meetings will be conducted in accordance with the SAE J1086/ASTM E527 standards for technical, metallurgical meetings, and will be conducted in strict compliance with CDA antitrust guidelines.

The Committee will deliberate on officially submitted alloy requests and take action, where appropriate, based on chemical composition, and as a minimum will use the following excerpts from the SAE Metals & Alloys in the Unified Numbering System ground rules as guiding principles:

  1. ”The UNS Numbering System operates through the volunteer efforts of a group of experienced, highly qualified metallurgists responsible for each of the various series of metals and alloys.”
  2. “A UNS designation is not a specification because it establishes no requirements for delivery conditions… .”
  3. “…committees will not investigate or consider patents which may apply to subject matter. Prospective users are responsible for protecting themselves against liability for infringement of patents, trademarks and copyrights.”

 The prerequisite requirements for acceptance of a new composition and assignment of a UNS designation are:

  1. The complete chemical composition is disclosed,
  2. The copper or copper alloy is in commercial use or is proposed for commercial use and
  3. The composition does not fall within the limits of any designated composition already in the list.

For a complete description of the steps necessary for registering a new alloy, please see our page on the registration process.

To accommodate consistent communications, requests for new and changed alloy registration(s) must be received at least six(6) weeks prior to the scheduled Committee meeting, the agenda will be distributed four(4) weeks before the teleconference, and comments must be received at least three(3) weeks prior to the meeting.