Wednesday, January 31, 2018

UKAS accreditation praises performance of EPAT facility

The recent UKAS accreditation (calibration no. 0009) of NEL’s facilities highlighted the performance of the lab’s new Elevated Pressure and Temperature (EPAT) test facility.

“This was the first time the UKAS team had visited when the EPAT facility was operational over its full temperature and pressure range,” says Head of Test and Calibration, Phil Mark. “They spent a full day assessing the facility and were very impressed with its performance and its stability at the extremes of its operating range.”

The reassessment audit took place at the end of 2017 and looked at all aspects of NEL’s activity that fall under the ISO 17025 standard - the main ISO standard used by testing and calibration laboratories. The audit took four days and involved seven UKAS auditors.

“We have held accreditation to ISO 17025 for many years,” says Phil. “It is a fundamental requirement that underpins our work and allows us to deliver our services.  Our staff were available to help the UKAS team. In all, over 20 person-days went into the audit.”

The EPAT facility allows industry to match operating conditions that have been difficult to reproduce until now. The facility can calibrate flowmeters at temperatures between 20 °C and 80 °C, at flow rates between 0.5 – 100 l/s and at fluid pressures between 4 - 93 bar (g).

The facility is the first of its kind in the UK to offer meter calibrations at these elevated temperatures and pressures. It allows meter calibrations to take place at conditions that are close to those found in the field and so reduces metering uncertainties. It gives NEL’s industry clients confidence that the meters they have deployed in the field are reading accurately.

Since it was commissioned, the EPAT rig has been used for a wide variety work including the re-calibration of meters, product development work and research for the National Measurement System.

The United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) is the sole national accreditation body for the United Kingdom. UKAS is recognised by government, to assess organisations that provide certification, testing, inspection and calibration services.

For more information, contact Phil Mark.


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NEL is a world class provider of technical consulting, research, measurement, testing and programme management services to clients across many industries including oil & gas, renewable and sustainable energy, process and government.

NEL also holds the UK National Standards for flow measurement and has an international reputation in key engineering areas such as flow measurement, computational fluid dynamics, environmental and thermal engineering.

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