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.

Status of NIST Thermal Insulation Reference Materials



Robert R. Zarr


The current status of thermal insulation reference materials at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is presented. This paper describes an ongoing thermal insulation measurement program that provides the public with Calibrated Transfer Specimens (CTS) and Standard Reference Materials (SRMs). The main distinction between these two types of reference materials is that a transfer specimen is measured individually in a guarded-hot-plate apparatus. Consequently, the value assignment and uncertainty is based on the individual measurement data for each material specimen. In contrast, a thermal insulation SRM is a batch of homogeneous material. The value assignment and uncertainty are based on the statistical characterization of a homogeneous lot of material as represented by selected samples from the lot. The paper summarizes a brief history of the thermal insulation measurement program and describes both reference materials, their current status, as well as the future outlook of the program
Proceedings Title
Thermal Conductivity 29/Thermal Expansion 17
Conference Dates
June 24-27, 2007
Conference Location
Birmingham, AL


calibrated transfer specimens, CTS, guarded-hot-plate, standard reference materials, SRM


Zarr, R. (2008), Status of NIST Thermal Insulation Reference Materials, Thermal Conductivity 29/Thermal Expansion 17, Birmingham, AL, [online], (Accessed June 20, 2024)


If you have any questions about this publication or are having problems accessing it, please contact

Created September 1, 2008, Updated February 19, 2017