The Library has an extensive collection of printed Australian Standards from 1926 to the present.


Copying of standards by our Copies Direct service is provided in accordance with the Copyright Act 1968.

Visit the Library in person to request and view standards in our Main Reading Room.

Australian standards are available for interlibrary loan. Enquire at your local library. 


A printed, hardcopy index provides a list of standards that were current in a given year.

Search by:  

  • keyword/subject in the alphabetical index
  • standard number in the numerical list

The index entry for a particular standard may also include: 

  • a synopsis or summary
  • references to amendments or revisions.  

Older Indexes may be cumulative and include listings for previously published standards.

Where to find Australian Standards?

Standards Australia's Reader Room provides non-commercial access to a number of Australian standards for personal use through their website https://readerroom.standards.org.au/.

The Library also holds a large collection of Australian standards, both current and historical, available on site in our reading rooms.

How do you request a printed Australian standard in the Catalogue ?

Do you know the number of the Australian standard?

If you know the standard number, request the printed standard through the Library catalogue.

For example: to find Australian Standard C148-1950

1. Go to the Library Catalogue record for Australian Standards

2. Scroll to the bottom of the record under 'Request this item' to see what standards the Library has in 'Items/Issues Held'. 

Under Items/Issues Held find the group which includes your Standard number. Standards held in the Library's collection are not listed individually, but grouped within larger series. In this case C148-1950 would be included within the series A1-C412 (1926-1978).

Note: Although the Library has many standards in its collection, it may not have every standard in these series.

3. If the particular standard number you need falls within one of the series listed, you can use the Select button to view the standard in the Library's Main Reading Room.

Before selecting 'Request' just enter the year and standard number in the spaces provided in the Library Catalogue request box:

  • Year (YYYY): 1950
  • Volume/No.: C148

If you do not know the number of the standard you need, you may be able to identify the standard number by searching an index.

  • Find the index record in the Library Catalogue, then request an index volume.
  • Identify the standard number, then request the standard.

Standards indexes or catalogues are published in annual volumes. They are not listed individually in the Library Catalogue, but grouped within longer date ranges.

The Library has indexes within the following date ranges:

Tip If a standard was endorsed during a particular calendar year, it will be listed in the index of the following year. e.g. a standard that was endorsed in May 1953 will appear in the 1954 index.

Case Study

Finding an historical Australian standard

How do I find out what Australian Standard for B.A (British Association) screw threads was in force in the early 1950s ? 


What information do you have? What other details do you need to find?

  • standard number: not known; date: 1950s
  • standard title: not known
  • keyword/subject:  screw

 Search an index to find the number, exact year and title.

1. Go to the Catalogue record for the 1954-1983 date range.

Tip Since older indexes are cumulative, they list previously published standards. A search of the index for 1955 will list standards from previous years. 

2. Submit an online request for the index for 1955, typing the year in the relevant field of the request box. The index volume will be delivered to the Main Reading Room.

3. In the index's alphabetical list search for the keyword/subject . The alphabetical list will also list the standard number.  In this case, we will find Screw threads: B.A., standard number B. 46.

4. In the index's numerical list find the standard number . The listing in the numerical index provides further information about the standard, such as the year it was endorsed, so you can ensure that it's the one you need.

You now have enough information to identify the standard: 

  • Standard number B.46; date: 1953 = B.46 —1953
  • Standard title: Screw Threads, British Association.

5. Go to the Catalogue record for Australian standards, and use the Select button.

In the request box, type in your information:

  • Year (YYYY): 1953
  • Volume/No.: B.46
  • Notes (< 100 characters): Screw threads, British Association

The standard you requested will be delivered to the Main Reading Room.  

Detail from Australian standards for road traffic control devices

Detail from Australian standards for road traffic control devices, E.36-1960, (Sydney: Standards Association of Australia,1960). 

The Library is currently unable to provide access to Australian Standards online.

Standards can be purchased online from Techstreet or from the SAI Global Infostore.


Early standards (1926-1978) were issued in series with the following alphabetical prefixes:

A  Civil engineering and building construction

B  Mechanical engineering

C  Electrical engineering

D  Automotive industry

E  Transportation

F Shipbuilding

G  Ferrous metallurgy

H  Non-ferrous metallurgy

K  Chemical industry

L  Textile industry

M  Mining

N  Agriculture

O  Timber

P  Pulp and paper

R  Ceramics

S  Domestic economy

T  Medical and dental

U  Aircraft

X  Office equipment and information processing

Z  Miscellaneous

Note some standards in the early series are also prefixed by the letter C. e.g. CK.1.

The alphabetical sequence was gradually superseded by the all-numerical series with country prefix AS or AS/NZ. 

Not sure where to start?