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(1) dimensionless unit of acoustical absorption, equal to the equivalent sound absorption of one square foot of a surface of unit absorptivity (i.e., of one square foot of surface that absorbs all incident sound energy). (2) dimensionless unit of acoustical absorption, equal to the equivalent sound absorption of unit of area of a surface of unit absorptivity.
safe pressure
maximum pressure a system can be subjected to without component failure.
safety device
(1) ancillary device fitted to an apparatus or machine in order to prevent accident or damage in the event of abnormal functioning of the system. (2) control that causes equipment to cease operation when adverse or excessive conditions occur.
safety head
in a compressor, a cylinder head held in place by a spring of such strength that it will not be compressed during normal operation but will be compressed by solid matter or liquid coming between it and the piston, thereby protecting the compressor.
safety interlock
see safety device.
hydrometer calibrated in salt concentration.
salvaged material
material, component, or assembly removed in a whole form from a structure or site in which it was permanently installed and subsequently reused in the building project.
sampling tube
a tubular windscreen to be attached to a standard microphone and designed to minimize its sensitivity to airflow noise.
sand-trap louver
device intended to allow the passage of outdoor air or exhaust air while minimizing the ingress of airborne sand. Also see louver.
sash crack
sum of all perimeters of all ventilators, sashes, or doors based on overall dimensions of such parts expressed in feet (centimeters) (counting two adjacent lengths of perimeter as one).
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About ASHRAE Terminology

ASHRAE Terminology, a free resource, is a comprehensive online glossary of more than 3700 terms and definitions related to the built environment, with a focus on heating, ventilating, and air conditioning (HVAC), as well as refrigeration, building envelope, electrical, lighting, water and energy use, and measurement terms.

This searchable glossary was designed for use by engineering professionals but is also useful for architects, building owners and operators, educators, public officials, and homeowners.

The terms in ASHRAE Terminology have been assembled and defined and are updated on an ongoing basis by ASHRAE Technical Committee (TC) 1.6, Terminology. TC 1.6 is concerned with terminology, nomenclature, definitions, abbreviations, symbols, and the International System (SI) and Inch-Pound (I-P) units used in the fields of heating, ventilating, air conditioning, water heating, and refrigeration.

To request a free electronic file of the complete list of terms and definitions, email ashraetermseditor@ashrae.org.