Many people who work in science and medicine might be unaware of what metrology is. Metrology is the primary measurement science, and NIST is the federal agency regulating our Metrologic system. It is mainly used to standardize measurements for different types of business practices. May 20th is World Metrology Day, and it is celebrated by scientists worldwide. If you are wondering what exactly metrologists are and which kind of work they do, you have come to the right place. Read on to learn about metrologists and NIST’s impact on their work!
How NIST Affects Metrology
Almost all of NIST’s research has a metrology component involved with it. NIST’s metrology-related resources and activities include standard reference materials, calibrations, standard reference data, proficiency evaluation materials, professional training, and tools that help evaluate measurement uncertainty. Their resources and activities also include measurement quality assistance programs and laboratory accreditation services that help customers establish traceability of measurement results.
One key component of NIST’s metrology work is the metrological traceability, which will require the establishment of an unbroken chain of various calibrations to specified reference measurement standards, usually international and national standards, in particular realizations of the measurement units of this International System of Units, or SI for short.
NIST will assure the traceability to the SI, or towards other specified standards, of measurement results that NIST itself will provide, either directly or through some official NIST program and collaboration. Some other organizations are responsible for establishing traceability of their results to national reference standards maintained by NIST or towards different specified reference standards.
What Exactly is Metrological Traceability?
The definition of metrological traceability that has now achieved global acceptance within the metrology community is stated within the International vocabulary of metrology. It is important to remember that traceability is the property of the result of a measurement and not of an instrument, calibration report, or laboratory. It isn’t achieved by following a particular procedure method or using a piece of special equipment. Simply having an instrument calibrated, even by NIST, isn’t enough to make the measurement results obtained using that instrument traceable into the realizations of the suitable SI unit or other specified references. The measurement system by which values and other uncertainties are transferred must be understood clearly and under the proper quality control.
If you’re interested in learning a little more about metrology and the type of equipment needed, visit the Lab People today!
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