FAQs                                                                                       NVLAP Logo

  • What kind of calibrations can you perform?
  • The ORNL Metrology Laboratory can perform any calibration listed on our web site, provided it does not place the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in direct competition with a commercial laboratory.  Additionally, the ORNL Metrology Laboratory has at its disposal the full range of capabilities available to a national laboratory for the development of new and unique measurement capabilities.  These capabilities can be used to develop new process to provide new, state-of-the-art calibration services to its customers.

  • How do I contact customer service?
  • For quotations or general questions, contact Mike Duncan
    For questions regarding status of equipment calibrations, contact Greg Strickland
    For Technical questions, call Joe Keck

  • Will I be advised of repairs beforehand?
  • Unless agreed upon beforehand and included in the quotation, the customer will be contacted and approval obtained prior to performance of any repair which would result in additional charges.

  • What is the turnaround time?
  • Typical turnaround time is 6 days from time of receipt of instrument/equipment and advanced payment .  Expedited service is available.

  • Do you require RMA #s?
  • RMA numbers are not required, however, an properly executed and signed Material Services Order Form must be issued to you prior to your shipping equipment to ORNL Metrology Laboratory for calibration.

  • Do you require a PO # before any work can be scheduled?
  • A Material Services Order Form and advance payment is required prior to the scheduling of any work. 

  • What are your payment terms?
  • Advance payment is required for any work under the terms of our Prime Contract with DOE.

  • How do I get my equipment to you?
  • Following receipt of a properly signed and executed Material and Services Order Form (MSOF) AND advance payment, you will be provided with complete shipping details for shipment of your equipment via any commercial carrier. Please do not ship equipment without authorization.

  • Are all calibrations performed by the ORNL Metrology Laboratory NVLAP Accredited?
  • No.  NVLAP accredits laboratories to perform accredited calibrations in specific areas.  Each laboratory demonstrates proficiency in those specific areas prior to accreditation.   The specific areas for which the ORNL Metrology Laboratory has been NVLAP-accredited are detailed on the NVLAP Scope of Accreditation is listed on the NIST web site.  The ORNL Metrology Laboratory is continually expanding its scope of accreditations.

     The ORNL Metrology Laboratory is not accredited in all of the areas for which it offers calibrations.   For these non-accredited calibrations, the ORNL Metrology Laboratory provides calibrations in accordance with its defined quality system based on ISO 17025 requirements.  The calibrations are performed using standards traceable to NIST and include calibration reports which contain both “as-found” and “as-left” data.   The ORNL Metrology Laboratory will include in the quotation a statement of whether the calibration will be performed using a NVLAP-accredited process or a non-accredited process.

  • What is ISO 17025?
  • The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) issued standard number ISO-17025 (2005) that establishes extremely rigorous requirements for a calibration laboratory quality program. Laboratories which comply with ISO 17025 also comply with the requirements of ISO 9001. This standard is the international template for quality programs for calibration laboratories to promote consistency and quality of calibration and is widely used as the basis for many commercial calibration laboratories’ quality programs.

     Implementation and maintenance of an ISO 17025 quality program requires a considerable commitment of both technical talent and financial resources from the laboratories.  Many calibration laboratories typically claim compliance with ISO 17025, however, the degree to which they actually adhere to the requirements of their quality program varies widely.  There is no mandatory industry policing of calibration laboratories to ensure that actual implementation of their ISO-17025 quality program.

  • What is the NVLAP Accreditation process?
  • To address the need for policing laboratories claiming adherence to ISO 17025, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), part of the United States Department of Commerce, established the National Voluntary Laboratory Accreditation Program (NVLAP).  Participation in NVLAP is entirely voluntary. NVLAP requires a calibration laboratory to complete an application and participate in a rigorous, on-site assessment of their compliance with ISO 17025 and participate in proficiency testing.  The assessment is conducted by some of the United States’ most respected metrology experts and includes a thorough review of a laboratory’s written quality assurance program, calibration procedures, records and observations of actual calibration activities in the laboratories. 

    The assessment may include proficiency testing to verify the laboratory’s capability to produce quality measurements.  The assessment is conducted when a new discipline is added to a laboratory’s scope and bi-annually to ensure that the laboratory is maintaining their commitment to their quality program. 

  • Is NVLAP accreditation meaningful?
  • The use of the NVLAP logo on any calibration report is strictly controlled by NIST/NVLAP.  If the NVLAP logo is affixed to any calibration report, you can be assured that the calibration was performed in accordance with the quality requirements of ISO 17025 using procedures and processes reviewed and approved by NIST/NVLAP. 

  • Does data come with the certificate of calibration?
  • Both “as-found” and “as-left” test data will be included on the standard, signed and approved ORNL Calibration Report.  Calibration reports for accredited calibrations will include the NVLAP logo.

  • Are calibration standards traceable to NIST?
  • YES.  All of our calibrations, both NVLAP-accredited and non-accredited, are performed using calibration standards that are maintained in calibrated status and fully traceable to NIST.  The ORNL Metrology Laboratory will not perform any calibration with a non-traceable standard.

  • Who determines the calibration cycles?
  • The ORNL Metrology Laboratory may recommend a calibration interval based on a combination of manufacturer’s recommendations, historical performance of similar devices or other methods.  However, the formal establishment of a calibration interval requires agreement by both the ORNL Metrology Laboratory and the customer.  Upon establishment of the calibration interval, this interval will be entered into the ORNL Metrology Laboratory’s calibration recall database for use in notifying the customer of upcoming calibrations due.

  • Will you remind me when my equipment is due for calibration?
  • Yes.  We will send an e-mail notification to the e-mail address which we have on file for you when it is time for recalibration of your device.  It is your responsibility to advise us of any change in personnel or e-mail addresses such that we can maintain our database current and ensure proper transmittal of the notification e-mail.

  • What if I misplace the certificate of calibration?
  • In the event of a misplaced calibration report, contact the ORNL Metrology Laboratory to receive a replacement copy of the report.

  • What are your warranties?
  • ORNL Metrology Laboratory cannot provide any warranties. Our work is performed on a best efforts basis. Should an error be detected in the performance of a calibration or in the documentation provided as a result of a calibration, the ORNL Metrology Laboratory can repeat testing and revise documentation as necessary to correct the error subject to full cost recovery.

  • Do you have a price list?
  • Due to the uniqueness of each calibration, we do not have a published price list for our services.  Please contact the ORNL Metrology Laboratory for a quotation for your calibration needs.

  • What methods of payment do you accept?

  • We accept VISA, MasterCard, Discover Card, check and wire transfer.
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Any reference to "accredited" or "accreditation" refers to the National Voluntary Laboratory Accreditation Program (NVLAP) and applies to calibration services only as performed by the Oak Ridge National Laboratory's (ORNL) Metrology Laboratory (Lab Code 200159-0). Refer to the ORNL NVLAP scope of accreditation for details."

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