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Mass and Force Group


The Mass and Force (MF) Group in the Quantum Measurement Division (QMD) of the Physical Measurement Laboratory (PML) at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST):

  • Provides high-accuracy physical measurement test and calibration services, and access to the top of the traceability chain for the SI mechanical units of mass, force, and related quantities (e.g., torque) to meet the needs and demands of U.S. industry, government, and the scientific community and to improve public health and welfare.
  • Provides appropriate leadership and input to embody strong representation of U.S. interests and technology at national, regional, and international standards organizations in the fields of mass and force metrology.
  • Carries out research and development and provides technical support in measurement science, instrumentation design, development, and testing to develop new physical measurement services, new realization of the units, new transfer standards, new methods and data, custom tests, and consulting for mass and force metrology to improve NIST capabilities for accomplishing the first two items listed to meet the needs and demands of U.S. industry, government, and the scientific community and to improve public health and welfare.
  • Provides technical support for legal metrology and to assist industry with the characterization of force transducers used in discrete parts manufacturing.

Mass and Force


Uniform Realization of the Unit of Torque in the US—Torque measurements are used heavily during product assembly and testing throughout the aerospace, automotive, and manufacturing sectors. Uncertainty evaluations surrounding the measurements are …

Small Force Metrology—The Small Force Metrology project supports U.S. instrumentation vendors, academic researchers, government scientists, and a broad spectrum of industrial physicists, physical chemists, …

Redefinition of the Kilogram—This project will conduct the research and development required to support the international efforts to prepare for a future redefinition of the unit of mass - the kilogram - the last remaining SI …

Mechanical Metrology Program—Providing critical measurements of mass, force, vibration, and acoustics for a broad range of industries and aspects of everyday life. Such measurements establish uniformity and reliability for …

Mass 1 kg CCM Key Comparison—Serve as co-pilot with BIPM in conducting the CCM 1 kg mass international comparison.

Implement Robotic Mass Measurements in SP250 Services—This project will develop and implement the procedures required to have fully automated/robotic mass measurement services in the range from 1 mg to 64 kg and for solid density measurements of mass …

Automation Update of Force Laboratory Deadweight Machines—This project will update all NIST force laboratory automation hardware and software to maintain the current capability of force calibration services. Calibrations conducted at the laboratory’s …

  • U.S. National Prototype Kilogram

    U.S. National Prototype Kilogram. (© Robert Rathe)

    The picture is of the U.S. National Prototype Kilogram. It is made of 90% platinum, 10% iridium. It was assigned to the United States in 1889 and is periodically re-certified and traceable to "The Kilogram" held at BIPM near Paris.


Physical Measurement Laboratory (PML)
Quantum Measurement Division

Mass and Force Group (684.07)
Dr. Zeina J. Kubarych, Leader
Jeanne K. Bruins, Secretary

General Information:
301-975-6624 Telephone
301-417-0514 Facsimile

100 Bureau Drive, M/S 8221
Gaithersburg, Maryland 20899-8221