Uganda through the Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) joined the rest of the World to celebrate World Metrology Day under the theme “Metrology in the Digital Era”.
Metrology refers to science of Measurements that involves the quantification of items by checking their weight, length, temperature, and time among others. Metrology embraces both experimental and theoretical determinations at any level of uncertainty in any field of science and technology, as defined by the International Bureau of Weights and Measures.
In order to ensure fairness in trade and precision of measurements in industry, the Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) operates the National Metrology Laboratories for calibration of industrial equipment. Also, it undertakes Legal Metrology activities for verification of Weights and Measures used in trade.
Metrology plays a very important role in all aspects of life, from ascertaining quantities of weight, length and time to life-saving medical measurements such as body temperature and blood pressure.
It also covers socio-economic aspects in areas such as agriculture, transport, aviation, physical infrastructure and manufacturing. Wrong measurements can result in wrong decisions which can threaten consumer protection and the quality of products and services on the market.
In extreme cases inaccurate measurements can result into loss of life and property, especially in the field of medicine and aviation. World Metrology Day is an annual celebration event that commemorates the anniversary of the signing of the Metre Convention in 1875.
This treaty provides the basis for the worldwide coherent measurement system that underpins scientific discovery, innovation, industrial manufacturing and international trade, as well as improvements in the quality of life and protection of the environment.
In line with the World Metrology Day theme of “Metrology in the Digital Era”, UNBS has undertaken digitization of most of its Metrology Services among which include;
This cutting-edge Information Management System is aimed at streamlining the adoption of Mobile Technologies as a tool to improve the efficiency, effectiveness and control of the use of both electronic and mechanical measuring instruments such as Counter Scales, Spring balances, Platform Scales and Weights used in trade.
It addresses the Billing and Receipting, including printing through a Mobile Point of Sale (POS), Licensing, including the printing of Mechanics and Workshop Licenses, Technician Licenses, Mechanics Work Logs etc., and Workshop Management Tracking and Repair Management for weighing equipment used in trade.
SMVT for Electricity Meters Verification
In 2016, UNBS started verification of Electricity Meters (YAKA) regulated by Statutory Instrument 2015 No.69 Weights and Measures (Electricity meters) Rules, 2015. The System for Mobile Verification Tool (SMVT) verifies Energy Meters and captures verification data for electricity meters both during in-house and field verification.
This is an e-system for verification of Road Fuel Tankers, Bulk Flow Meters and Static Tanks Dipsticks to ensure fairness in trade.
The Metrology Laboratory Information Management System (METLIMS) enables clients to access the National Metrology Laboratory (NML) Calibration services online, regardless of their location.
METLIMS which can be accessed through the UNBS Website has reduced the burden of UNBS clients physically coming to the Bureau Offices to apply for calibration of their equipment.
UNBS has also automated most of its other core services such as Product Certification, buying of Standards, tracking analysis of product samples submitted to UNBS Laboratories via and Customer Complaint Handling.
With the above deployment of ICT in Standardization, UNBS has seen a tremendous reduction in the turn-around time for service delivery to its clients due to simple, transparent, and faster means of service.