The Definition of Metrology
The definition of metrology is the science of measurement, including experimental and theoretical determinations. While metrology is commonly associated with scientific measurement, it applies to many other fields, including technology and science. Metrologists use this science in a variety of ways, including calibrating measurement instruments, evaluating measurement performance, and conducting research. For more information, see Wikipedia: Metrology
For the manufacturing sector, one type of metrology tool is the coordinate measuring machine. This tool is operated by moving a probe over the part and generating an electrical signal whenever it touches it. The probe’s internal computer then tracks its position and generates a measurement report that shows the overall dimensional accuracy of the part. With multiple surfaces being measured simultaneously, a part can be mapped to its overall dimensional accuracy. It is a vital tool in quality assurance.
Scientific metrology, also known as measurement science, focuses on the development of new measurement methods and the realization of measurement standards. It then transfers these standards to users. National laboratories like the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the Bureau of Indian Metrology (BIPM) coordinate this activity. International organizations such as the International Organization for Standardization coordinate international standardization and collaborative projects. These collaborative projects lay the technical foundation for the development of codes of practice and measurement standards.
In practice, metrology has three branches: legal metrology, industrial metrology, and applied metrology. The last branch, legal metrology, deals with the use of measurement in manufacturing processes and seeks to establish the value of measurement in general. Calibration is a fundamental part of metrology and is important for quality control and calibration. It is one of the most important branches of metrology. The two branches of metrology work together to improve accuracy and precision of measuring instruments.
The most important aspect of metrology is that it provides protection to both the environment and the health of the population. By establishing measurement methods and units for parameters, metrology keeps measurements within acceptable limits. Various industries and sectors use metrology in their work. It is important to understand that metrology requires advanced math and science to maintain the integrity of measurements. If a measurement is not accurate or has a high degree of accuracy, it is not useful for progress.
The scientific application of metrology is as varied as the applications for which it is used. Its history can be traced back to ancient cultures, when people needed to measure things. Today, industrial metrology uses national and international standards to provide certainty and accountability to the end user. In industrial metrology, a number of industrial measurement labs are used as a resource for this science. However, metrology has become so important to our everyday lives that we have created three separate subfields.
Since the first metric convention, there has been an international organization to coordinate the measurements of all nations. This organization has a central laboratory near Paris and has duties analogous to national laboratories. The International Bureau of Weights and Measures coordinates international scientific work on the metric system. The International Committee of Weights and Measures oversees this bureau and holds annual meetings. It is the foundation of the modern metrology. However, it can only be successful if the world can trust its standards.