NSI Commemorates the World Metrology Day 201220th, May 2012
The World Metrology Day is commemorated on the 20 May every year to raise awareness about the importance of accurate, reliable and internationally accepted measurements in everyday life.
This year the chosen theme was Metrology for Safety, reflecting the importance of correct measurements to ensure our safety whether at work or in our leisure activities. National and regional metrological regulations based on internationally agreed technical requirements help avoid or eliminate technical barriers to trade, ensure fair trade practice, care for the environment, maintain a satisfactory healthcare system, and (last but not least) ensure our safety – a concern for all of us.
Because the 20 May fell on a Sunday in 2012, Namibia joined the international community in commemorating the World Metrology Day through a number of promotional events from Monday 14 May to Friday, 18 May 2012. These included promotional interviews on radio and television, as well as an Open Day at the NSI Metrology Laboratory on Friday, 18 May.
Visitors to the NSI on the Metrology open day received explanations and demonstrations on some of the NSI Metrology services:
- Maintenance of National Measurement standards for Namibia (through calibration and inter-comparison against international standards in order to ensure the accuracy, traceability and international recognition of these standards). NSI had on display its recently acquired range of measurement standards and equipment that includes mass pieces, balances, Standard Platinum Resistance Thermometers, Calibration baths, Reference multimeters and gauge block sets. In addition to demonstrations of how measurement traceability is realised in Namibia, Metrologists explained how the equivalence and recognition of the national measurement standards is achieved through participation in the activities of the Joint Committee of the Regional Metrology Organisations and the International Bureau of the Weights and Measures.
- Calibration of test and measurement equipment for industry (through the implementation of the national measurement system to ensure that measurement results in Namibia are accurate and traceable to the National Measurement Standards and, through these, to international measurement standards.). Industrial metrologists had a number of typical calibrations in progress to demonstrate how NSI calibrates Vernier callipers, micrometre screw gauges, balances, mass pieces, micropipettes and volume measures.
- Verification and inspection of instruments (by initially and periodically carrying out a prescribed series of tests and certifying measuring instruments in trade use to ensure their accuracy of measurement and other regulatory requirements). Verification Officers demystified the process of verification of measuring instruments by explaining how NSI uses its calibrated instruments and measures to either certify or reject measuring instruments that comply or do not comply.
- Inspection of consumer goods pre-packed for sale (by monitoring and testing for compliance of pre-packed goods to labelling and tolerance limits requirements as regulated by the Trade Metrology Act). An inspector demonstrated how a sample of pre-packed salt bags is inspected.
The commemoration World Metrology Day 2012 was very effective as Metrology was de-mystified to a very wide audience of the Namibian population through radio and TV. The open day also proved very popular with students from the University of Namibia, among other stakeholders who witnessed some interesting demonstrations and could see for themselves what NSI had to offer in the field of metrology. The NSI would like to thank them for their attendance despite the day being sandwiched between a public holiday and a weekend.
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