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Forensic Science

Overview

NIST is working to strengthen forensic practice through research and improved standards. Our efforts involve three key components:

Science

We conduct scientific research in several forensic disciplines, including DNA, ballistics, fingerprint analysis, trace evidence, and digital, among others. We provide physical reference standards and data that help forensic laboratories validate their analytical methods and ensure accurate test results.

 

CSAFE Logo

 

We also support CSAFE, a NIST Center of Excellence in Forensic Science, which is working to develop new statistical methods for use in evidence examination

 

Policy

We co-chaired, with the Department of Justice, the National Commission on Forensic Science, which formulated recommendations for the U.S. Attorney General on matters such as accreditation requirements for forensic science service providers.

Practice

We administer the Organization of Scientific Area Committees for Forensic Science (OSAC), which is facilitating the development of science-based standards and guidelines for a broad array of forensic disciplines.

News

Overview of Firearms Process Map

OSAC's Firearms & Toolmarks Subcommittee Develops Firearms Process Map

A scientist in lab coat and rubber gloves places a large clear bag of marijuana on a weighing scale.

NIST Study Will Help Labs Distinguish Between Hemp and Marijuana

A burning workcart. There are sensors set up all around it, and the clock on the floor reads 13:59.

The New NIST Fire Calorimetry Database Is Available to Answer Your Burning Questions

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