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20 years of Deutscher Kalibrierdienst (DKD = German Calibration Service)


In 1977, the Deutscher Kalibrierdienst (DKD) was founded by the Federal Ministry of Economics (BMWi), the Bundesverband der Deutschen Industrie (BDI = Federal Association of German Industry) and the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt (PTB). It thus became possible to entrust metrological tasks carried out up to then by the PTB to private companies. The PTB accredited company-owned calibration laboratories for certain measurands so that these could carry out - for their own purposes and as services for third parties - calibrations which are traceable to the units of measurement defined on the international level and required by the standards of the ISO 9000 series. The DKD thus is a good example of deregulation and of the strengthening of the important technical and scientific services sector.

At present, calibration laboratories exist all over Germany for many different measurands. It is expected that the 200th calibration laboratory will be accredited this year.

The Deutscher Kalibrierdienst as a member of the European Organization for the Accreditation of Laboratories (EAL) is accepted by other countries in and outside Europe as a reliable partner and has contributed to ensuring the competitiveness of German industry all over the world. The good reputation of the DKD has led to renowned metrological laboratories abroad desiring to be accredited by the DKD as well. Other accredited DKD laboratories will soon be added to those existing in Europe, the Near East, North and South America, especially in countries with which the PTB is implementing Technical Cooperation projects to develop a metrological infrastructure.

Many high-ranking guests from Germany and abroad will participate in the function which will have "DKD: A Contribution to the Technical and Economic Infrastructure in Germany" as its motto and take place on September 2, 1997. Among these guests will be Dr. Günter Rexrodt, Federal Minister of Economics, who will hold a lecture entitled "Importance of the Technical and Scientific Infrastructure of Germany as a Place to Do Business". Global tendencies in metrology will be dealt with by the lecture to be held by Dr. Terry Quinn, the Director of the International Bureau for Weights and Measures in Paris.

The 140th PTB Seminar "Deutscher Kalibrierdienst - Services for Germany" which will take place on September 3 - also in Braunschweig's Civic Hall - will elucidate the use of the DKD for industry and testing, comprise lectures on the new challenges for metrology with a view to stimulating future developments and illustrate the links between metrology, accreditation of calibration laboratories and international trade.