Glossary


Accreditation
a procedure by which an authoritative body gives formal recognition that a body or person is competent to carry out specific tasks

Accuracy of a measuring instrument
is its ability to give a measure close to a “true” value represented by a standard

Calibration
the set of operations which establishes, under specified conditions, the relationship between values indicated by a measuring instrument or measuring system, or values represented by a material measure, and the corresponding known values of a measurement

Certification
a procedure by which a third party gives written assurance that a product, process or service conforms to specified requirements

Conformity assessment procedure
procedure used to determine whether a product, service or system comply with the requirements stated in a standard

Harmonised standards
equivalent standards, standards on the same subject approved by different standardising bodies, that establish interchangeability of products, processes and services, or mutual understanding of test results or information provided according to these standards

Inspection
conformity evaluation by observation and judgement accompanied, as appropriate, by measurement, testing or gauging

Legal Metrology
the activity which deals with the units of measurement, methods of measurement and measuring instruments in relation to the mandatory technical and legal requirements, which have the objective of ensuring a public guarantee from the point of view of the security and of the appropriate accuracy of measurements

Measurement accuracy
National standards maintained in national metrology institutes must be compared with international standards. The result of this standard, i.e. the accuracy of the national standard with the estimated uncertainty will be stated in a certificate.

Metrology
science of measurement

National standard
a standard that is adopted by a national standards body and made available to the public

National measurement standard
a standard recognised by a national decision to serve, in a country, as the basis for assigning values to other standards of the quantity concerned

National Standards Body
a Standards body recognised at the national level, which is eligible to be the national member of the corresponding international and regional standards organisations

Notification
process of informing WTO members that a draft or proposed or revised technical regulation, standards, sanitary and phytosanitary measures or conformity assessment(testing, certification, inspection) procedure exist

Quality
the totality of features and characteristics of a product or service that bear on its ability to satisfy stated or implied needs

Quality assurance
all those planned and systematic actions necessary to provide adequate assurance that a product or service will satisfy given requirements for quality

Quality policy
the overall quality intentions and direction of an organisation (or an economy) as regards quality, as formally expressed by top management (top policy makers).

Standardisation
the activity of establishing, with regard to actual or potential problems, provisions for common and repeated use, aimed at the achievement of the optimum degree of order in a given context

Standard
a document that provides for common and repeated use, rules, guidelines or characteristics for products and their related processes or production methods, with which compliance is not mandatory.

Standards body
a standardising body recognised at national, regional or international level, which has as a principal function, by virtue of its statutes, the preparation, approval or adoption of standards that are made available to the public

Technical regulation
a regulation that provides technical requirements, either directly or by referring to or incorporating the content of a standard, technical specification or code of practice.

Testing
a technical operation that consists of the determination of one or more characteristics of a given product, process or service according to a specified procedure

Traceability
implies that a measurement can be related to a national or international measurement standard, whereby it is related to the national standard through an unbroken chain of comparisons, all having stated uncertainties and that this relationship is documented. The measuring instrument must be calibrated by a measurement standard that is itself traceable

Uncertainty
A measurement is carried out with the use of a measuring instrument which is never perfect. The instrument is accurate to a degree and the accuracy itself is certain only within limits that expressed quantitatively as the uncertainty.