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Traceability & Certification: What’s the difference?

In the world of measurement and calibration, the most reliable way to determine a product’s quality is the evidence provided to support the claims about a product’s attributes: Traceability and Certification.

A detailed outline of these attributes can be found in our Introduction to Calibration Gases article.

At a minimum, CAC Gas requires traceability on every gas mixture we sell. Traceability indicates that the manufacturing lab is using quality reference materials for all measurements, which can be traced back through the metrological traceability chain all the way to the primary measurement reference (e.g. the kilogram kept at BIPM). This represents our minimum quality standard.

From there, a product may then be certified by several different methods. Certification requires that the certifying lab is proven to follow a prescribed production method, or meet internationally recognised standards regarding manufacturing, or measurement.

Where a mixture is certified by a country’s national standard or officially recognised method, we call them a Certified standard.

Any mixture which is certified by an internationally recognised standard, which is therefore recognised under the ILAC MRA, we call an Accredited standard, because the producer is accredited to produce them.

Which method of certification is right for your application may depend on a number of different factors, including:

  • Contractual obligations
  • Site / Internal Requirements
  • Regulatory requirements

It is important to note that the product classification has no direct impact on the ‘accuracy’ or ‘uncertainty’ of a mixture.

Certification and accredited certification add authority to a manufacturer’s statements about their product. Therefore, for certain applications, they may not be the most suitable.

Ultimately, the best product for each application will be determined by the above-mentioned factors, but also equally important is the reputation, credibility, and reliability of the manufacturer.

As experts in metrology and gas mixture manufacturing, CAC GAS can select the best option for your specific application. You can rely on CAC GAS for the best quality products and application expertise.

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