FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Contact: Kristie Garcia
Director of Public Affairs, New Mexico Department of Agriculture
Sept. 8, 2021
NMDA’s State Metrology Lab receives top accuracy certification
LAS CRUCES – People often confuse the word metrology with the word meteorology, but there is only one certified laboratory in the state dedicated to the science of measurement, or, metrology.
The State Metrology Lab is housed in the New Mexico Department of Agriculture’s main building in Las Cruces, and it’s the lab’s responsibility to ensure weights used for commerce are accurate.
The most recent Certificate of Metrological Traceability issued to NMDA’s State Metrology Laboratory includes the Mass Echelon I Scope, the highest level possible. The Mass Echelon I Scope demonstrates the lab’s ability to achieve “extra fine accuracy.” The United States Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology issued the certificate to the lab Aug. 25, and it is effective until Feb. 1, 2023.
The certificate also includes the following scopes: Mass Echelon II, Mass Echelon III, Weight Carts, Volume Gravimetric I, Volume Transfer II and Volume Transfer II LPG.
New Mexico Secretary of Agriculture Jeff Witte said this most recent certificate demonstrates the lab’s high proficiency in providing an important service to New Mexicans. The lab is one of only eight state labs in the United States to receive the Mass Echelon I designation.
“Whether you’re a consumer or a business owner, you should have peace of mind knowing that our team is doing its best to ensure products are weighed and measured in the most accurate manner possible,” said Witte. “If weights are placed on a scale to ensure the scale is weighing products correctly, our team calibrates those weights at our metrology lab to ensure they are accurate. This could be a platform scale on a farm, a truck scale or a grocery store produce scale at the checkout counter.”
NMDA State Metrology Lab Manager Clay Ivey and NMDA Metrologist Ryan Rust are responsible for ensuring the accuracy of the weights used throughout the state for commercial weights and measure devices. The lab’s reference weights are traceable to the International System of Units through the National Institute of Standards and Technology.
Customers may include registered repair service businesses or manufacturers from across the state. Because of its many certification scopes, customers from across the United States use the NMDA State Metrology Lab for checking the accuracy of their weights.
The National Institute of Standards and Technology issued mass and volume standards to all states in order to provide uniformity throughout the country. The State Metrology Lab maintains the Official State Standards for New Mexico, which ensures a fair and equitable marketplace for producers, sellers and consumers. All mass and volume test standards used by producers, weights and measures repair agencies, and state inspectors are certified annually in the State Metrology Lab.
For a virtual tour of the lab and to learn more about its function, watch this New Mexico Ag in the Classroom video: https://www.facebook.com/100984129944555/videos/268331331539065
For an animated video explaining the National Institute of Standards and Technology, visit https://youtu.be/2j9BGVKbzS4.
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LinkedIn: New Mexico Department of Agriculture