Calibration uncertainties and why is it important for technicians to understand it?

What are the Uncertainty Contributors?

The calculated calibration uncertainty should include the following contributions, according to section 6.4 of the ILAC P14 policy:

  • Uncertainty at CMC
  • Resolution of the UUT
  • UUT Reproducibility

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Why Measurement Uncertainty is Important?

Every day, quantitative measurements are taken. The precision with which these measurements are taken is determined by a set of criteria. One organization may require low precision measures, whereas another may require high precision measurements. Despite the set standards, no measurement can be guaranteed to be exact. Every measurement result has an independent level of uncertainty, no matter how meticulous or exact it is. As a result, if measurement is critical, measurement uncertainty is critical as well. No measurement is complete, according to the National Institute of Standards and Technology, unless it is accompanied by a statement of the corresponding amount of uncertainty. The key to ensuring that industries all over the world focus on the relevance of measurement quality and the repercussions of excluding measurement uncertainty are to raise awareness of the importance of measurement uncertainty.

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Improving quality is essential for lowering risks and expenses. Measurement uncertainty, on the other hand, is a factor that is frequently disregarded. It’s a crucial part of measurement that has an impact on quality, costs, decisions, and risks. The requirement for more precision is less critical than the need to assess quality. Only the level of accuracy required to effectively meet each organization’s criteria should be used. To assess the quality of the results declared to meet the defined accuracy requirements, measurement uncertainty should be mentioned and recognized. Organizations and individuals can improve quality while lowering costs and risk through increasing awareness and education.

Is uncertainty error?

Uncertainty and error are frequently conflated terms, although they are not interchangeable. The discrepancy between our instrument’s measurement and that of a standard reference instrument is called error. Uncertainty, on the other hand, is linked to the accuracy of the calibration or measurement is taken, as well as repeatability and predictability.

Why is it important for technicians to understand Calibration uncertainties?

Calibration certificates are always confusing and difficult to understand the details when the technicians are not familiar with metrology. The calibration certificate certifies the measurement device’s quality and accuracy, thus it’s crucial that you comprehend the terminology and what the random numbers signify.

The paper contains different characteristics regarding the device, as well as information on the calibration laboratory and the standards to which they adhere. The “uncertainty” of the calibration conducted, a value required by the ISO 17025 standard, is one very important piece of information to pay attention to.

Simply expressed, the value linked with “uncertainty” represents the measurement’s reliability. Because of a multitude of circumstances, including the tools used, the person performing the calibration, and the method utilized, every measurement comes with some uncertainty or doubt. This value indicates whether or not this measurement is appropriate for use.

It’s vital to remember that “error” is not the same as “uncertainty,” and that “error” has no significance without the measurement’s “uncertainty.” The difference between the reference standard and the measurement’s “uncertainty” is called error.