Calibration is the process used to determine and maintain the accuracy and margin of error of the instrument in question. The process varies depending on the type of measuring device being calibrated. However, it typically involves using the instrument or device in its known capacity to weigh/ test a sample (calibrator) of known value. Calibration is achieved by checking the accuracy of the measuring instrument with a known value or ‘standard.’ Once calibrated, the measuring device may demonstrate zero error or may require adjustment to acceptable levels. It is essential that measuring or testing instruments are calibrated according to a periodic cycle for accuracy, safety, and legal requirements. Industry calibration specialists adhere to strict guidelines such as those provided by the Bureau International des Poids et Mesures (BIPM) or the International Bureau of Weights and Measures to achieve calibration accuracy. The organisation is responsible for the worldwide recognition and unification of an international system of measurements. Calibration is typically conducted under strict conditions to ensure that even the slightest variation or deviation from the recommended measurement is identified and corrected if necessary.
When Should An Instrument Be Calibrated?
Measuring instruments should be calibrated at regular intervals to ensure the accuracy of results; namely annually, quarterly or monthly. Instruments should be calibrated according to manufacturer’s instructions and after any mechanical incident, repair, accident, electrical shock, vibration and whenever observations are questionable. Outcomes of scheduled calibration are influenced by multiple factors such as:
- Wear and tear- regularity of use
- The newness of the instrument
- Stability of the instrument
- Nature of use
- Past calibration history
Calibration and a concise and complete calibration history are essential across multiple critical disciplines, such as medical, pharmaceutical, military, defence and also the food, beverage, and manufacturing industries. The ultimate aim of calibration is to minimise the chance of measurement error by taking every step necessary to guarantee the accuracy of instrument readings. The need for calibration, in any industry, should not be underestimated, but especially in the medical and pharmaceutical sector as lives are at stake and in manufacturing can result in faulty or low-quality goods. Misrepresentations and errors due to faulty measuring apparatus can result in loss of life, substantial public liability claims and can significantly affect the profitability and reputation of a company. Thus, regular calibration and trust and confidence in the results of your measuring equipment is ultimately good business sense.
ASG X-Technologies offers comprehensive calibration services to a broad range of industries. Our technicians are trained to the highest standards and have extensive knowledge of calibration standards. For accredited calibration advice, support and service call ASG on 1300 880 414.