Weights and Measures Service

To provide leadership and technical resources to assure the accuracy of the quantities and quantity representations in all commercial transactions in the United States, to promote a uniform national weights and measures system, to promote harmonization of national and international legal metrology standards,
and to facilitate the transition to the metric system.
Related Programs

Examples of Funded Projects

Awards not available.

Funds support standards development for devices and packaging, the development of training materials for State and local weights and measures officials, and the delivery of weights and measures related training to weights and measures officials, industry representatives, and State and industry laboratory metrologists.

Agency - Department of Commerce

The Department of Commerce fosters and promotes the nation's economic development and technological advancement through vigilance in international trade policy, domestic business policy and growth, and promoting economic progress at all levels.

Program Accomplishments

Ensures economic equity and uniformity in commerce. The agency provides classroom training, computer-based training, and technical assistance to State weights and measures laboratories to help assure that State measurement standards are traceable to national standards. A wide range of proficiency tests are conducted on an annual basis. It also develops device performance and commodity packaging standards with representatives of manufacturers, packagers, distributors, consumer groups, and officials in Federal, State, and local jurisdictions who enforce laws and regulations governing packages and measuring devices. The agency provides technical support to the National Conference on Weights and Measures (NCWM) and aids in the development of uniform and compatible State weights and measures laws and regulations, codes for measuring device design and performance, and the design and implementation of test procedures and prototype device evaluation. The Weights and Measures Division staff participates actively in NCWM affairs, and provides technical assistance to its members, to Federal, State, and local government, and to private manufacturing and service businesses. The Fourth Edition of NIST Handbook 133 was published in January 2003. A comprehensive CD-ROM-based training course in laboratory mass calibration procedures and concepts was completed in September 2003. A CD-ROM-based training course in the use of electronic audit trails for commercial weighing and measuring devices was completed in June 2004. Workshops for weights and measures administrators were held in 2001 and in 2004 to address management and budget issues confronting weights and measures enforcement programs. A benchmark study of the national weights and measures system was completed in February 2005.

Uses and Use Restrictions

This program provides education, technical advice, and assistance to States, State and industry metrologists, manufacturers of weights and measures devices, and other device users; manages U. S. representation and participation in the International Organization of Legal Metrology (OIML) and in regional legal metrology organizations to harmonize legal metrology standards; provides leadership and assistance on metric use and conversion to businesses, state and local governments, standards organizations, trade association, and the education community; coordinates the metric transition activities of all Federal agencies; develops model laws and regulations; upgrades State laboratories; conducts technical studies; and provides technical support to the National Conference on Weights and Measures.

It includes publications, related activities, special studies, technical advice, technology transfer through audit of State laboratories, technical training, and development of training material.

There are no restrictions on the use of this material.

Eligibility Requirements

Applicant Eligibility

States, political subdivisions of States, private industry, and the general public.

Beneficiary Eligibility

States, political subdivisions of States, private industry, and the general public.



Aplication and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination


This program is excluded from coverage under E.O.


Application Procedures

Letter requesting services should be sent to Chief, Weights and Measures Division, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 2600, Gaithersburg, MD 20899-2600.

Award Procedures

Not applicable.




National Bureau of Standards Organic Act, Public Law 56-177, as amended, 15 U.S.C. 271 et seq.; 15 U.S.C. 201 et seq.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

Not applicable.


Not applicable.


Not applicable.

Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements

Not applicable.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

Not applicable.

Post Assistance Requirements







Financial Information

Account Identification

13-0500-0-1-376; 13-4650-0-4-376.


(Operating expenses) FY 07 $4,532,000; FY 08 est not available; and FY 09 est not reported.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

Not applicable.

Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature

Model laws, regulations, codes, and test procedures relating to weights and measures enforcement, packaging and labeling, method of sale of commodities, unit pricing, open dating, field inspections, and registration of service persons, and service agencies, engine fuel quality, and weighmasters. Manuals for coordinating the system of State laboratories, testing specific measuring devices, and training State officials. Design and performance codes for scales, liquid and vapor meters, distance and time measuring devices, and other measuring equipment. Most publications available from the Government Printing Office. List of Publications is available from the Weights and Measures Division at no charge.

Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office


Headquarters Office

Carol Hockert, Chief, Weights and Measures Division, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 2600, Gaithersburg, MD 20899-2600. Telephone: (301) 975-4004. Use the same number for FTS.

Criteria for Selecting Proposals

Not applicable.

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