Update from NCSL Part II: Selecting Calibration Points: No Simple Task

James Tennermann
Aug 01st 2013
Science & Sensing Technologies
Industrial Measurements
Life Science

At this year's NCSL I attended a panel discussion titled “Calibration Point Selection Practices.” The panel included Jeff Gust of Fluke Calibration, Mark Kuster of Pantex Metrology, Joe Petersen of Abbott Laboratories, and Malcom Smith of Westcan Calibration Services. Quite an esteemed panel of metrologists to be sure.


Selecting calibration points for measurement equipment may seem like a simple task, but it’s not as easy as it might look. Equipment manufacturers know this, and it’s why they often provide only general guidance as to calibration intervals and practices. Imagine giving a technician a piece of equipment to calibrate. The technician does not know how the equipment is used and does not know how important the measurement is. How should it be calibrated? This subject provoked a lively conversation that could have easily exceeded the time allowed for it.

One conclusion is that it’s difficult (if not impossible) to provide a generic template or an SOP that is appropriate for all circumstances. Anyone selecting calibration points should be familiar with the equipment, the measurement parameters, and the way that the equipment is used. The rationale for selecting the calibration points should be logical and defensible. Without this approach, it’s possible that the calibration will leave the end user with unnecessary risk. On the flip side, the calibration may be more complex and costly than is required.
 

For our GMP compliant readers, we did a search on calibration for regulated environments and found this great webinar transcript from FDA News on addressing calibration and cleaning applications for FDA inspectors. The webinar is given by Kenneth Christie, who has a long history in calibration and validation in pharmaceutical environments. The transcript includes his bio, and information on ordering the recorded webinar from FDA News. Here is the transcript: "Equipment Maintenance, Calibration and Cleaning: Often Overlooked, but Never Forgotten!" If you don't already have it, download Vaisala's Calibration Handbook, and here is an article on "Using Saturated Salts as a Humidity Calibration Reference."

Our own calibration laboratory in Vancouver, Canada just spent the last two days undergoing an audit, so next week's blog will be: "3 Tips to Staying Sane During an Audit" by our Calibration expert, Michael Boetzkes.

Add new comment

Vaisala´s Calibration Services

Standard Calibration

Standard Calibration

Standard calibration performed on Vaisala instruments before they leave the factory. In order to maintain best accuracy for the measurement, the...
Accredited Calibration

Accredited Calibration

Many industries are required by regulatory bodies to comply with strict quality standards. Vaisala offers calibration services accredited according...
Custom Calibration

Custom Calibration

Custom calibration is the correct choice if specific points within your instrument’s measurement range are needed. Calibrating and adjusting your...
On-Site Calibration

On-Site Calibration

Calibrating Vaisala Continuous Monitoring Systems (CMS) on site helps to maximize reliability and profitability by minimizing costly equipment...
Vaisala Service Center Repair

Service Center Repair

Our professional repair services help extend the life of your Vaisala equipment. Repairs include fault tracing and replacement of failed components...

 

Author

James Tennermann

Business Development Manager

James worked for Vaisala since 2001 in various roles. He provided oversight, guidance, and development for Vaisala's rapidly growing life science business segment in North and South America. He has been creating new pathways to new customers by doing extensive collaboration with scientists, engineers, and business people, internally and externally.