Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Milligram Mass Metrology Using Electrostatics



Gordon A. Shaw, John A. Kramar


— Although mass has historically been defined using an artifact standard, other means of realization are possible. One alternative approach employs a precision electromechanical balance, using the SI electrical units to derive a force used to measure the weight of a mass artifact. The NIST Electrostatic Force Balance (EFB) incorporates SI-traceable voltage, displacement and capacitance measurements, allowing the traceable measurement of electrostatic force that can be used in conjunction with local gravity to arrive at mass. This article briefly describes this weighing process, its associated uncertainty, and context within the impending redefinition of the SI.
Proceedings Title
IEEE Proceedings
Conference Dates
August 24-29, 2014
Conference Location
Rio de Janeiro
Conference Title
CPEM 2014


metrology, kilogram, milligram, electrostatic force balance, SI, precision measurement


Shaw, G. and Kramar, J. (2014), Milligram Mass Metrology Using Electrostatics, IEEE Proceedings, Rio de Janeiro, -1 (Accessed April 17, 2024)
Created August 25, 2014, Updated February 19, 2017