The Fluid Metrology Group maintains the national standards for flow quantities, including gas and liquid flow, airspeed, liquid volume, and liquid density. For instance, the group maintains six flow calibration systems to measure gas flows from 0.1 cm3/min to 105 m3/min (an eleven decade flow range) and five primary liquid flow standards to cover five decades of flow range. The group’s unique and often best in the world facilities are used to conduct collaborative research on flow measurement, to perform calibrations of reference meters that meter manufacturers use to calibrate their products, and to perform proficiency tests for commercial laboratories seeking accreditation.
NIST flow measurements contribute to nearly every US economic sector including defense, energy, transportation, pollution control, and the manufacture of pharmaceuticals and semi-conductors. The group’s volume and gas flow standards ensure equitable trade of trillions of dollars' worth of petroleum and natural gas each year. Our research is focused on improving primary standards that realize flow units and improving the physical models of flow meters so that their calibrations can be extrapolated to real applications with the required accuracy. The group works closely with leading US meter manufacturers and users, government agencies, and academic research institutes to provide new measurement solutions for emerging needs. We participate in national and international documentary standards efforts that ensure product quality and advance US trade.
The Fluid Metrology Group welcomes opportunities to collaborate on joint research, technology, and standards development projects to advance flow metrology. The group provides multiple opportunities for students, scientists, industry, academia, and other R&D laboratories to collaborate. Specific opportunities depend on current areas of interest within the group, but may include undergraduate research fellowships, postdoctoral fellowships, visiting scientists, and guest researchers as well as various cooperative research arrangements ranging from formal agreements, such as CRADAs, Consortia, and interagency agreements, to informal collaborations. For more details, see Employment and Internship Opportunities and Collaboration Opportunities.