ILAC has a long-standing relationship with the International Bureau for Weights and Measures (BIPM). Further information on the ILAC liaison activity with the BIPM is available from the members area of the ILAC website.
Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)
The BIPM-ILAC Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was again reaffirmed on 8 March 2016. The MoU recognises the need to strengthen the links between accreditation and metrology and to coordinate actions in respect of tasks related to national and international measurement infrastructure. The MoU was initially signed on 3 November 2001.
Joint Working Group
The BIPM-ILAC Working Group is responsible for the implementation of the BIPM-ILAC MoU and has produced associated documents, as below.
The Joint BIPM-OIML-ILAC-ISO Declaration on Metrological Traceability 2011 builds on the tripartite common statement and declaration issued by BIPM, OIML, and ILAC in 2006 on the relevance of various international agreements on metrology to trade, legislation and standardization.
Relevance of International Agreements
The BIPM-OIML-ILAC common statement and declaration on the relevance of various international agreements on metrology to trade, legislation and standardisation is a reflection of the ongoing close cooperation between ILAC, BIPM and OIML and promotes the use of the three existing Mutual Recognition Arrangements.
Accreditation of Calibration and Measurement Services of National Metrology Institutes
The Joint ILAC-CIPM Communication 2012 provides guidance on the accreditation process of National Metrology Institutes (NMIs) for their measurement services in order for the NMI to optimise the benefits from being accredited when it is, or is in the process of becoming, a signatory to the CIPM MRA, and to generally facilitate the process for Accreditation Bodies when accrediting the measurement services of NMIs.
Calibration and Measurement Capabilities (CMC)
The BIPM-ILAC Joint Paper on CMC 2007 provides very important information for work between ILAC and BIPM.
The following resolution was adopted by the ILAC General Assembly in Sydney, Australia on 30 October 2007 regarding the BIPM-ILAC Joint Paper:
ILAC Resolution GA 11.20 The ILAC General Assembly accepts the ILAC/BIPM joint paper on Calibration & Measurement Capabilities (CMC) as a significant step forward in the coordination of this concept between ILAC and BIPM.
The Joint Paper provides the basis for ILAC documents related to CMCs developed from 2007 and this concept of CMCs has been adopted in ISO/IEC 17011:2017 Conformity assessment requirements for accreditation bodies accrediting conformity assessment bodies.
National Metrology Institutes and Accreditation Bodies
The BIPM-ILAC Joint Statement and Covering Letter outline the roles and responsibilities of national metrology institutes and national recognised accreditation bodies.
“As the Director of the International Bureau of Weights and Measures (in French, Bureau International des Poids et Mesures or BIPM), I am delighted to lend my support to your “International Accreditation Day.”
“Accurate and traceable measurement is increasingly important in science, commerce, in the monitoring of our environment and in new areas of application such as laboratory medicine and forensic science.
“The metrology community has been working with its accreditation colleagues for many years so as to enhance world – wide confidence and trust in measurement. BIPM’s major contribution is through the network of National Metrology Institutes (NMIs) which maintain and disseminate national standards that provide traceability to the International System of Units (in French, the Système international d’unités, the SI). The NMIs establish and maintain national standards based on the long-term stability and universality provided by the SI, and provide calibrations to, amongst others, accredited laboratories. These laboratories then offer calibration services to others, so establishing national chains of traceable measurement results. This unique combination provides the soundest possible basis for ensuring reliable measurement and international consistency.
“The effectiveness of this international measurement system is formalised in the Mutual Recognition Arrangement of the International Committee for Weights and Measures (the abbreviation of the French title is CIPM MRA) and the ILAC arrangement. From the BIPM’s point of view, we are committed to working together to further strengthen our collaboration with ILAC/IAF so as to create a more powerful and influential support for international trust in accurate measurement.”
– Andrew Wallard, BIPM Director
BIPM Contact Details
Tel: 33 1 4507 7070
Fax: 33 1 4534 2021