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CIPM MRA experts have received training to optimize their use of the newly-launched KCDB 2.0

The one-week course entitled "Optimizing the CIPM MRA - the KCDB 2.0", organized by the BIPM and sponsored by NIST, was held from 4-8 November 2019 at the BIPM and was attended by 27 CIPM MRA experts. The aim of the course was to equip those who operate the CIPM MRA CMC review processes with appropriate information, and to ensure that they will not learn the new KCDB 2.0 elements by 'trial and error'.

The BIPM, in response to the recommendations from the CIPM ad hoc Working Group on Implementing the Recommendations from the Review of the CIPM MRA, developed and launched a new system - the KCDB 2.0 in October 2019. It integrates the whole CMC review process into a single platform - from development of CMCs to publication in the KCDB. The manual transfer of the CMCs' Excel files for review and publication is no longer required in the new system. The system also encourages the consistency of data from the beginning. In the original KCDB, the first of the two-tier CMC review process was organized remotely and was coordinated manually by the RMO TC Chairs at the regional level, and the inter-RMO review process was organized through the JCRB database. The CMCs themselves were developed using the Excel templates by NMIs/DIs, and communicated manually to the review processes.

Optimizing necessary competences

Operation of the CMC review process is complex and requires careful examination of NMI/DI capabilities submitted for publication in the KCDB. It was considered that the KCDB 2.0 could present a challenge if TC/WG Chairs and TC/WG Members were not familiar with the new menu of tools in the database; the course was designed to optimize their knowledge of these tools. Each practical exercise commenced with a demonstration of the relevant tools available in the KCDB 2.0. The "CMC review simulator" - a dedicated offline KCDB 2.0 learning tool - helped to reinforce the information acquired. The course participants wrote and submitted their CMCs as a Writer, acted as Reviewers, submitted comparisons as a Pilot, and finally managed the process as a TC Chair. The hope is that the participants will share experiences within their TC/WG community and explain the operation of the KCDB 2.0 to the NMIs.

Refreshing the knowledge about the CIPM MRA and sharing best operation practices

The course content additionally provided information to refresh participants' knowledge about the CIPM MRA requirements and its review outcomes. Each stage of the process during the practical exercises was supported with lectures describing the requirements.

The course content also addressed the different approaches taken by the Consultative Committees and RMOs for CMC review and comparisons. Their guidelines and templates ensure a reduced workload and harmonization of different RMO practices within their metrology area. With respect to this, Elsa Batista, a participant from EURAMET TC F CMC Coordinator group, stated in her feedback that:

"This was a very good opportunity to be informed about the organization of each CC and learn from other fields of activities. It was verified that there are guides and templates available on several committees webpages that can be adopted in my one area of work, Flow and Volume. I would suggest that the Chairs of each TC can meet more often in order to exchange good practices for a decreased workload of the MRA."

Support of NIST

The BIPM acknowledges the US Government Grant from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) which enabled the BIPM to run this course.


"This CBKT course on the new KCDB 2.0 and on efficient implementation of the CIPM MRA has been a great success. I highly appreciated that straight from the very beginning of this course, there were extensive and lively discussions of the participants and the lecturers on the subjects presented. The course provided ample opportunities for the participants (many of them TC chairs) to learn how to more effectively implement the CIPM MRA and to exchange best practices between RMOs and different technical disciplines. This CBKT course has made a highly valuable contribution into further efficient implementation of the CIPM MRA. I expect that the extensive training in the use of the just-launched KCDB 2.0 will be of great value in the successful introduction of the KCDB 2.0 in the metrology community. I thank BIPM for doing such a great job in the organization of this CBKT course, and I thank NIST for their financial support to make this CBKT course happen."

Dr Gert Rietveld, CCEM President and CIPM member

"The brainstorming activity at the end of the course was the best strategy to consolidate the knowledge acquired in a week, taking as an example the case studies and best practices shared by the participating colleagues. The list of the "hints of use of the KCDB 2.0" constitutes an excellent introduction manual to familiarize new users of the KCDB 2.0 and also to clarify doubts of the constant users."

Liz Catherine Hernández Forero, INM, Colombia

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