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Mechanical Measurements

Mass Standards

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Technical Contacts:
Patrick Abbott
Tel: 301-975-4218
E-mail: patrick.abbott@nist.gov

Zeina J. Kubarych
Tel: 301-975-4468
E-mail: zeina.kubarych@nist.gov

Please contact the technical staff before shipping instruments or standards to the address listed below.

Mailing Address (correspondence only):
National Institute of Standards and Technology
100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8221
Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8221

1 . Please contact the technical staff for correct Fee and appropriate Service ID Number for your equipment.
2. Please do not send purchase orders and equipment to NIST without scheduling a calibration.
3. Calibrations for variations of complete standard weight sets are available. These may require fewer (or more) than the number of measurement series required for the calibration of a complete standard weight set. These variations will affect pricing of the service. Contact the technical staff for details.
4. If you request a calibration estimate (which includes cost and turnaround time estimates and start date of calibration), please note that we need to receive a confirmation from you to reserve the calibration start date. If no confirmation is received within 30 days, the reservation will be canceled and the start date given to the next customer.

Service ID Number Description of Services Fee ($)
22011C Weight cleaning (see note below) 316
22021C Single or two equal weights 1 kg or 100 g 2936
22023C Combination of 5,2,2,1 in the range of 1 kg - 1 mg 2936
22032C Single or two equal weights 2 kg to 50 kg 2943
22110S Single Weights > 50 kg to 1200 kg At Cost
22120S Single Weights 1200 kg to 28000 kg At Cost
22160C Single Weights for Dead Weight Pressure Testers < 10 kg 1165
22161C Single Weights for Dead Weight Pressure Testers > 10 kg to 50 kg 1481
22170S Special Mass Measurement Services At Cost

Fees are subject to change without notice

Note: For weights cleaning please order one 22011C service ID for each of the following:
-one "large" weight (10kg, 20kg, 30kg or 50kg)
-up to three 2kg, 3kg, and/or 5kg combination
-up to three 1kg
-500g - 5g combination
-wire/leaf weights 500mg - 1mg combination

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Mass (22011C-22120S)

NIST maintains the national standard for mass in the form of the prototype kilogram (K20) and provides services to support the parts of the national measurement system that rely directly or indirectly on mass measurements.
These services include the calibration of suitable weight sets. A calibration consists of establishing a mass value and the appropriate uncertainty for that value for each weight that has been designated to be a reference standard. Weights are available from manufacturers, many of whom can directly furnish documentation suitable for meeting quality assurance contracts and requirements. Typical relative standard uncertainties range from 5 x 10-8 at 1 kg, up to 3.3 x 10-4 at 1 mg, and 2 x 10-7 at 10 kg.

NIST calibrates individual weights or sets in the range of 1 mg to 50 kg in decimal subdivisions. Weights must be of one piece construction, with no adjustment cavity, material, and surface finish comparable to ASTM Type I, classes 00, 0, 1, 2, and OIML E1, E2,  and F1. NIST also calibrates large mass standards larger than 50 kg to 28 000 kg if the design, material, and surface finish are compatible with the intended usage. For these large mass standards, an adjustment with reference to a nominal or desired value can be included as a part of the calibration procedure.

In the absence of instructions from the customer, weights will not be cleaned prior to calibration. If weights are to be cleaned, by customer instructions or as determined by NIST with customer consent, a separate fee will be charged. If a calibration is to be performed before and after cleaning, double the fee will apply.

The values of true mass included in the report will be determined by using computed volumes based on the manufacturer's statement of density of the material, or on the density computed from measured volumes. The customer should submit this information to the Mass & Force group. In the absence of this information, estimated density values will be used. Mass standards in the range of 1 kg – 100 g fabricated from stainless steel and of one-piece construction will have their density determined as part of a "first-time" calibration at NIST.  

Any weight that is found to be magnetized will not be calibrated.

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Single Weights for Deadweight Pressure Testers (22160C-22161C)

Weights are compared to discrete standards by the method of double substitution weighing.

Special Mass Measurement Services (22170S)

For tests not covered by the previous descriptions, the NIST technical contact cited at the beginning of this section should be consulted to determine whether a test can be performed and to obtain an estimate of the price of the test.

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Traceability to the SI Unit of Mass

References-Mass Standards

The Kilogram and Measurements of Mass and Force, Z.J. Jabbour and S.L. Yaniv, J. Res. Natl. Inst. Stand. Technol. 106, 25-46 (2001).  

Revised formula for the density of moist air (CIPM-2007), A. Picard, R. S. Davis, M. Glaser, and K. Fujii, Metrologia 2008, vol. 45, pp. 149-155. 

An Extended Error Model for Comparison Calibration, C. Croarkin, Metrologia 1989, vol. 26, pp. 107-113. 

OIML R 111-1 International Recommendation, 2004 edition, International Organization of Legal Metrology, Bureau International de Métrologie Légale 11, rue Turgot - 75009 Paris – France, biml@oiml.org.

Designs for the Calibration of Standards of Mass, J. M. Cameron, M. C. Croarkin, and R. C. Raybold, Natl. Bur. Stand. (U.S.), Tech. Note 952 (June 1977). 

Comprehensive Mass Metrology, Michael Glaser and Manfred Kochsiek, Wiley-VCH (2000).

Metrologia Special Issue on Mass, Metrologia vol. 40 (6) December 2003.

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Program questions:
Phone: 301-975-5454, Fax: 301-975-2950
NIST, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8363, Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8363