If you work in a laboratory, you likely have heard of USP. The USP, or the United States Pharmacopeia (USP), is a scientific, non-governmental organization that sets the official public standard for drugs or drug products here in the United States. These standards include the strength, quality, identity, and purity of manufactured, distributed, and consumed substances in the United States. The USP drug standards are used in over 140 countries and are enforceable in the United States by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). USP sets the standard for balances in your laboratory facility, and there is a lot that goes into their reasoning for balancing and weighing. Read on to learn more!
How USP Balancing Currently Works
Currently, USP 41 and USP 1251 are the primary standards related to lab weighing. USP 41 was the original standard for lab balances. It requires that any accurate weighing application be performed on a calibrated balance. USP 1251 outlines much more specific requirements for analytical weighing. A newer addition was calculating the SQ-MIN or minimum weight value. This is what informs the user, the lowest weight that they could accurately weigh. So this figure has to be calculated and will be very specific to the balance and might be slightly different across balances of a similar model or resolution or capacity.
The balance is placed in a suitable spot with sufficiently lower levels of vibration and air current. It has to have a constant electrical supply, and the balance and surrounding work areas have to be kept tidy and neat. It is a smart idea to use a dust brush or something similar to dust the balance pan before weighing so as to remove any materials that the previous operator might have left. When a balance is moved, it has to be allowed to adjust to its new environment’s temperature to get recalibrated.
If required, turn on the power, and allow your balance to equilibrate for at least an hour before proceeding with calibration. Microbalances might require up to 24 hours to reach full equilibrium. If the balance power has gone off and come back on, as in a power outage, certain kinds of balance might display a message that indicates that the balance has to be calibrated before weighing is made.
USP Certificates and Services for Lab Balances from the Lab People
The Lab People can complete all the required documentation and procedures to complete the needed calibration and data records for your laboratory balance. Ask about our Advanced Pharma Calibration Certificate, designed for GMP and GLP facilities, and complies with the current USP regulations. Talk to one of our Metrologists today to learn more and schedule your services today!
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