Measurement for our planet
Measurement for our planet

As COP26 approaches, discover how NPL plays a key role in enabling climate action through the delivery of accurate, reliable data that supports decision making and enables low carbon innovation.

World Metrology Day 2021

20 May: Measurement for Health

What will healthcare look like in the future?

  • An increasingly ageing population will demand technologies, products and services to promote independent, quality lives – from robotics and telemedicine to home testing of vital health indicators.
  • There will be a significant increase in wearable and implantable sensors to generate continuous, reliable and high-quality data about health – think artificial intelligence, virtual reality, nanotechnology and much more.   
  • There will be more predictive, preventative and personalised medicine as we will have a detailed understanding of health and disease for each person.

Do these changes need measurement?

Metrology, or the science of measurement, covers the routine making of measurements and how they are progressively enhanced over time to increase their accuracy. It also covers the measurement infrastructure that ensures that we have confidence in the measurements - wherever they are taken in the world - which is essential in encouraging people to adopt new technologies.  

Virtual lab tour – Measuring the right dose of radiation

Our team of scientists working in Medical Radiation Physics explain how they use phantoms in medical imaging to simulate cancer patient treatments. In under 10 minutes they explain what a phantom is, how it is made, used, and, most importantly, how patients benefit from our science.

When it comes to treatment, (in common with so much of modern life), precision measurement ensures we don’t get too much or too little, but just the right amount.

Looking to the future: Measurement for Health webinar

Watch our webinar recording to find out what NPL is doing now in the healthcare sector and how our Foresighting work is informing our planning for the future.

The importance of measurement for society 
JT Janssen, Chief Scientist 

NPL’s work in healthcare
Ana Denis-Bacelar, Senior Research Scientist, Medical Radiation Physics 
Nadia Smith, Senior Research Scientist, Informatics 

Looking to the future: trends in metrology 
Richard Brown, Head of Metrology 

Live Q and A 

Celebrating World Metrology Day

World Metrology Day is an annual celebration of the signature of the Metre Convention on 20 May 1875 by representatives of seventeen nations. The Convention set the framework for global collaboration in the science of measurement and in its industrial, commercial and societal applications. This year’s theme was chosen to create awareness of the important role measurement plays in health, and thus in the wellbeing of every one of us. 

Find out more and download the poster

World Metrology Day: Online science assemblies

20 May 2021 

Metrology is the science of measurement and 20 May was the 146th birthday of the moment the world agreed to use just one kilogram and metre. NPL, the UK’s National Measurement Institute, presented online primary and secondary school science assemblies. In a lively and entertaining way, they showed how important measurement is to nearly every aspect of your life.

Scientists specialising in healthcare measurements  discussed their work and took questions from school audiences.

You can watch recordings of these assemblies here:

You can watch recordings of these assemblies here:

For Primary Schools: 17 minutes of talk, then an 8 minute lab tour followed by 17 minutes of questions and answers.

For Secondary Schools: 13 minutes of talk, then a 10 minute lab tour followed by 6 minutes of questions and answers.

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