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Aerosol Standard AS2278

AS2278.1 covers standards for metal aerosols from 50 ml to 1 litre in capacity.

Why is AS2278 important?

AS2278 spells out the performance requirements of aerosol containers (including quality tests that can makers must perform on the empty can) as well as the burst and distort requirements, which help ensure that fillers select the right cans for their product.

It also provides guidance on consumer safety labelling for aerosols.

What else does AS2278 cover?

AS2278 also covers the classification of flammable aerosols and the requirements for water bathing but these requirements are also explicitly spelt out in key documents like the ADG Code, IMDG Code, etc.

Where to get of copy of AS2278

A printed or PDF copy costs around $50 from SAI Global (who have the exclusive right to sell Australian Standards) at

Networkable versions and copies allowing users to ‘cut and paste’ cost more.

What about aerosols under 50 ML capacity?

In line with the UN Recommendations, SP190 of the Australian Dangerous Goods Code declares that “Aerosols with a capacity not exceeding 50 ml containing only non?toxic constituents are not subject to this Code.” In other words, they are not Dangerous Goods no matter how many of them you have in a load!

What about glass and plastic aerosols?

Plastic aerosols up to 220 ml are allowed under the EU Aerosol Dispensers Directive and IATA allows plastic aerosols up to 500 ml in size to be transported as aviation freight (subject to conditions).

Here in Australia, the Australian Dangerous Goods Code states that “Aerosol dispensers must comply with AS2278 or an equivalent international or foreign standard” (cl.

Since AS2278 only cover metal aerosols, application should be made to the Competent Authorities Panel for any non-metal aerosols. They have previously issued ‘approvals’ for plastic aerosols but you should allow time for this process (the Panel only meets twice a year). A specialist dangerous goods consultant can help prepare your submission.

For more information on the Panel - including a template application form - see or talk to the Association's Executive Director.

What does the future hold for plastic aerosols?

The Association has previously commenced the dialogue with Standards Australia about a standard for plastic aerosols but this work was put on hold while we waited for clarification at the EU and UN level on the requirements for plastic aerosols.

The Association remains in touch with the European Aerosol Federation (FEA) and has sighted a draft industry standard it has prepared on plastic aerosols.

The FEA has sought an amendment to the Aerosol Dispensers Directive allowing plastic aerosols up to 1 litre in size. (At the moment they are treated the same as a glass aerosol with a plastic film sleeve and hence have a maximum capacity of 220 ml).

Currently an independent study (overseen by the FEA) is being undertaken in the EU to determine the safety of adopting the FEA’s proposals. It is planned that this study will be complete by the end of 2015. (For more information on the Directive, see

The European industry also expects that 2015/16 will see moves to revise the ADD so as to increase the maximum permitted pressure for non-flammable aerosols increased from 13.2 to 15 bar.

In the interests of global harmonisation we would also be seeking to have AS2278.1 revised to ensure consistency with any changes in the Directive.



The information contained in this website is not intended to be professional advice and is subject to change. The Association expects that, before any information contained in this website is relied upon, the user will exercise the appropriate due diligence procedures to independently confirm the accuracy of the information. On this basis, to the extent permitted by law, the Association is not liable for any and all claims relating to reliance on the information contained in this website copy.