The Past, Present and Future of Measurement

Lengthy but interesting post about forthcoming changes to the definition of four of the base units of the SI system.

Protons for Breakfast

Measurement, the simple process of comparing an unknown quantity with a standard quantity, is the essential component of all scientific endeavours. We are currently about to enter a new epoch of metrology, one which will permit the breath-taking progress of the last hundred years to continue unimpeded into the next century and beyond.

The dawn of this new age has been heralded this week by the publication of an apparently innocuous paper in the journal Metrologia. The paper is entitled:

Data and Analysis for the CODATA 2017 Special Fundamental Constants Adjustment

and its authors, Peter Mohr, David Newell, Barry Taylor and Eite Tiesinga constitute the Committee on Data for Science and Technology, commonly referred to as CODATA. In this article I will try to explain the relevance of CODATA’s paper to developments in the science of metrology.

The Past

The way human beings began to make sense…

View original post 1,920 more words

3 Responses to “The Past, Present and Future of Measurement”

  1. In line with the new definitions of mole and ampere, why not just define the kilogram as the mass of a certain number of moles of a certain substance? I think that this was one of the proposals. Why did it lose out?

  2. Michel C. Says:

    A kilogram is quite a large quantity and the temperature is a problem.

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