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SAE International (SAE) is a professional organization for mobility engineering professionals in the aerospace, automotive, and commercial vehicle industries. The Society is a standards development organization for the engineering of powered vehicles of all kinds, including cars, trucks, boats, aircraft, and others.


Starting out as the Society of Automobile Engineers in 1905, SAE's original purpose was to promote the use of standards in the nascent automobile industry (initially in the United States) and to promote the better interchange of ideas and expertise, in a similar manner to many other technical societies.

Although beginnings were modest with only 30 inaugural members (Andrew L. Riker was the inaugural president, and Henry Ford the inaugural vice-president), SAE's numbers grew steadily. Membership reached approximately 1800 by 1916, at which point the society expanded its mission to cover all forms of self-powered transport, including aircraft, boats, agricultural machinery, and others. The new word automotive was coined by the Society to describe all self-powered vehicles, and the name was changed.

After World War II, the Society established links with other standards bodies and automotive engineering societies worldwide, and since then has founded sections in a number of countries formerly lacking such organizations. A quarter of the Society's membership today is from outside of North America.

SAE has established a number of standards used in the automotive industry and elsewhere. The standards most familiar to the average American consumer probably include:

  • measuring automobile power in units of horsepower (SAE Net Horsepower), which has been generally followed in the USA since the early 1970s
  • motor oil classification standards
  • tool measurement sizes

The SAE's extensive use of DRM to restrict access to online versions of their web-based database of technical papers has provoked controversy, leading MIT to cancel its online subscription in 2007. <ref>MIT Libraries news release</ref> After much internal debate and conversation with customers and stakeholders, SAE changed its DRM policy. <ref>SAE press release</ref>

See also


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External links