The Dimensional Metrology Group (DMG) realizes and disseminates the SI unit of length, concentrating on dimensional measurements over several orders of magnitude, from micrometers to kilometers. We develop, perform and deliver measurements, standards and infrastructural technology services that promote U.S. innovation and industrial competitiveness. The DMG also performs research to advance the state of the art of in all forms of length and coordinate metrology. For length metrology, we develop best in the world refractometers to realize the unit of length in industrial environments. For coordinate measuring technologies, we develop methods to characterize the performance of both new and existing systems. It is critical that technology is fully characterized so that U.S. industry can understand its measurement capabilities before investing in new technology. Our knowledge of advanced system performance is used to actively support international and national dimensional metrology standards committees through our participation and leadership, with emphasis on rigorous measurement uncertainty evaluation and comprehensive model based performance testing. We have a suite of coordinate measuring machines in environments that allow us to make the most accurate measurements available on critical parts, prototypes and fixtures. We maintain unique testing facilities that allow industry innovators access to the SI unit of length, with best in the world uncertainties, to help aid in the development of the next generation of more efficient and higher throughput coordinate dimensional measuring systems. We participate in conferences and other professional organizations to identify needs in emerging and expanding industries that can be supported by our depth of knowledge in dimensional metrology. As an example, our performance testing procedures for laser measuring systems are now being investigated by the forensics and law enforcement communities to help ensure the integrity of dimensional measurement data presented in court.
The DMG organizes our efforts into three focused projects that provide (1) critical dimensional measurements services, (2) traceability to the SI unit of length and (3) methods to evaluate and standardize advanced measurement technologies.
SI Length and Traceability—We maintain and develop methods to provide traceability to the meter via laser frequency/wavelength. The most significant source of uncertainty in most very high accuracy length measurements is the …
Dimensional Measurement Services—The Dimensional Measurement Services (DMS) project enables innovation, commercialization, and global trade of U.S. products by providing a path for traceability to the SI unit of length, developing …
Advanced Dimensional Measurement Systems for Manufacturing—The Advanced Dimensional Measurement Systems for Manufacturing (ADMSM) project provides the measurement science and infrastructure needed by industry to adopt new dimensional measurement …
NIST researchers evaluating 3-D scanners used in industrial and forensic crime scene measurements.
Physical Measurement Laboratory (PML)