A critical phase in the life-cycle of a material is the transition from the development stage to that of design and industrial application. Advanced technical ceramics are currently in this phase and their future market penetration and acceptance as engineering materials critically depend on the availability of a robust set of standards for test methods which allow one to determine their mechanical and thermal properties in a reliable and reproducible way. In Europe, standardisation on continuous fibre reinforced ceramic matrix composites (CFCCs) officially started in 1989, when CEN TC 184 on Advanced Technical Ceramics was launched. The scope of TC 184 covers testing methods, and no efforts are paid to the development of material and product standards as yet. The work programme of TC 184 in the area of CFCCs, aimed at the establishment of testing methods for the generation of reliable data for design purposes, is reviewed.

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