NPL

The National Physical Laboratory (NPL) is the UK’s national measurement institute and is a world-leading centre of excellence in developing and applying the most accurate measurement standards, science and technology available to man. For more than a century NPL has developed and maintained the nation’s primary measurement standards. These standards underpin an infrastructure of traceability throughout the UK and the world that ensures accuracy and consistency of measurement.

NPL ensures that cutting edge measurement science and technology have a positive impact in the real world. NPL delivers world-leading measurement solutions that are critical to commercial research and development, and support business success across the UK and the globe.

The Gas and Particle Metrology Group at NPL has a world-leading capability in the accurate production and analysis of standard gas mixtures. The group contains 13 full-time staff working exclusively on gas analysis. In the field of energy gases, NPL produces and analyses gas mixtures that underpin measurements of natural gas, odorants, biogas, refinery gas, LPG & LNG and hydrogen purity. Other areas of expertise include measurements of environmental pollutants, greenhouse gases, breath alcohol, vehicle emissions and ultra-pure gases for the microelectronics industry. NPL’s expertise is regularly and consistently demonstrated by excellent performances in CCQM and EURAMET comparisons.

NPL also plays a leading role in many standardisation committees, including various working groups of ISO TC 158 (gas analysis) and ISO TC 193 (natural gas analysis), and is a member of CEN TC 408 (natural gas and biomethane for use in transport and biomethane for injection in the natural gas grid).

In this JRP, NPL will lead WP2 (Composition Measurements) and contribute in several other areas. The NPL lead scientist will be Mr Michael Downey who has been leading NPL’s research into the LNG and LPG analysis areas; he will be assisted in the delivery of this project by Dr Andrew Brown and Dr Peter Harris. The work in the JRP relies on NPL’s expertise in preparing high accuracy LNG standards in the gas or liquid phase as well as the knowledge held on gas analysis.

Relevant recent publications:

  • A. S. Brown, M. L. Downey, M. J. T. Milton, A. M. H. van der Veen, E. T. Zalewska and J. Li, Final report on EURAMET.QM-S6/1195: Bilateral comparison of liquefied hydrocarbon mixtures in constant pressure (piston) cylinders, Metrologia, 2013, 50, 08015.
  • M. J. T. Milton, G. M. Vargha and A. S. Brown, Gravimetric methods for the preparation of standard gas mixtures, Metrologia, 2011, 48, R1-R9.
  • A. S. Brown, M. J. T. Milton, G M Vargha et al, Measurement of the hydrocarbon dew point of real and synthetic natural gas mixtures by direct and indirect methods, Energy & Fuels, 2009, 23, 1640-1650.
  • M. J. T. Milton, P. M. Harris, A. S. Brown and C. J. Cowper, Normalisation of measured natural gas composition data measured by gas chromatography, Measurement Science and Technology, 2009, 20, 025101.