What It Means And Why It’s Important
Lighthouse Worldwide Solutions is proud to announce that all of our manufacturing and service facilities have been accredited for the ISO 17025 testing and calibration of air particle counters and volumetric air samplers. We are also able to do these calibrations in the field, so we can continue to service your particle counters and air samplers long after you’ve originally purchased them.
We’re very excited by the possibilities ISO 17025 calibration allows for our customers across the entire world. This set of guidelines holds unique possibilities not available through other certifications.
What Is The ISO 17025 Calibration?
ISO 17025 is a set of guidelines set forth by the International Standards of Organization, an independent organization dedicated to setting standards of practice across the world. But what makes these standards so thorough is that they were not just developed by the ISO, but also by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). The IEC is an international organization designed to set standards specifically for the electrical, electronic, and technology industries.
Together, these two organizations have created high standards that will allow laboratories to ensure the quality, reliability, and repeatability of performed tests or calibrations.
The calibration covers size setting error, counting efficiency, sampling flow rate error, size resolution, and false count in the actual equipment. The guidelines also cover:
- technical competence of laboratory employees,
- measurement traceability to international standards (e.g., NIST),
- the testing and maintenance of laboratory equipment to ensure reliable results,
- the evaluation and reporting of the uncertainty of measurement,
- and much more.
For particle counters, this holds true to the guidelines in ISO 21501-4.
Why Does ISO 17025 Matter To You?
If you can’t tell, as manufacturers, we’re very excited about this! But you might be wondering why this really matters to you if you’re not a lab that can get certified for this calibration.
Well, also as manufacturers, we want to make sure we are providing you with the absolute best technology has to offer so you can feel secure in your particle counter data integrity and data quality. You can rest assured that your product has been built in a lab that has gone through rigorous testing, as well as regular internal audits and external certifications.
Part of this process is being regularly evaluated by independent third-party certification bodies, such as A2LA. This keeps best practices at the forefront of our minds.
As the world’s leader in clean air technology, we take pride in setting industry standards and best practices. So you can know that you are securing the best for your business in a long-term investment, and rest assured you have the best in the industry.
Working with a lab that is accredited for ISO 17025 is another way for you to be sure that you are receiving the best technology has to offer.
What Can You Expect From An ISO 17025 Calibration?
As aforementioned, the calibration will cover five parameters to give you a better understanding of your particle counter: size setting error, counting efficiency, sampling flow rate error, size resolution, and false count.
Size Setting Error
The size setting error tells you the deviation from the particle counter’s programmed sizes. Per ISO 21501-4:2018certification guidelines, the particle size must be ±10% to pass the calibration. The uncertainty of each particle size will be stated in microns.
This metric will be determined by comparing a particle to a National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) traceable particle with higher sensitivity. The ISO 21501-4:2018 standard allows for a tolerance of 50% (± 20%) of the minimum detectable size and 100% (± 10%) of size 1.5 – 2 times larger than the minimum detectable channel size. The uncertainty is stated in percent counting efficiency.
Sampling Flow Rate Error
The sampling flow rate tolerance is ±5% of the stated rate for the unit and refers to the amount of air that flows through the laser block of the particle counter. The flow value uncertainty is stated in liters per minute (LPM).
The size resolution will be stated with the particle size used in microns and the criteria of less than 15% as stated per ISO 21501-4:2018. The uncertainty will be stated in percent size resolution.
This is also known as the zero-count test. It is the number of particles detected on the minimum detectable channel in a certain volume of air with a 95% confidence level. We also state the false count rate in accordance with JIS B 9921, which gives a limit of one count per five minutes. Both values are stated as average observed counts in five minutes.
What Is The Uncertainty?
It might be unnerving to read that there will be a statement of uncertainty with some of those measurements, but it’s important to remember that any device which yields a measurement will have a statistical level of uncertainty. It is simply a measurement of the doubt that exists about the results of any measurement. All stated uncertainties are traceable and rely on the accuracy and specifications of our test equipment and reference particles. We use sound formulas for calculating uncertainty for the 5 calibration parameters. These formulas can be found in ISO 21501-4:2018 Annex A:E.
Lighthouse Worldwide Solutions is dedicated to setting best practices in the industry for testing, calibration, and particle counting technology. While uncertainty is statistically impossible to avoid, we do everything we can to keep it low and honestly reported with accurate tracing. So you can be confident you are doing the best for your particle counter by working with the world’s leader in particle counting technology.
How Can You Book Your ISO 17025 Calibration?
This is the easy one! All of Lighthouse Worldwide Solutions’ service facilities are accredited to provide ISO 17025 calibration. We are also able to do ISO 17025 calibration in the field.
We’ve made it easy for you to place a request for calibration on our website. Click here to book your calibration today.