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University Advancement

Scientist to Explain the Impending Redefinition of the Kilogram

In 2018, the kilogram, the last of the seven base international system of units that is still defined in terms of a material artifact, will be changed from its original definition in 1889 to one based on a constant of nature. As the kilogram is the international standard by which everyone in the entire world gauges mass, this change has profound implications for all aspects of science and technology.

Jeff Gust, an Ellensburg native and chief corporate metrologist at the Fluke Corporation, will present "Why Measurements Matter—The Science of Measurement and the Impending Redefinition of the International System of Units (SI)," at 7:00 p.m., October 23, in Lind 215, on Central Washington University’s Ellensburg Campus.

Gust will briefly review the history of the SI units, and discuss the experiments that are being performed in order to make this redefinition possible. Additionally, the kelvin, the international standard unit of temperature, will be redefined based on a better fundamental constant. Gust will also discuss the science required to both set the world standard for measurements and to disseminate these definitions from National Measurement Institutes to everyday measuring devices, and how a Washington State company is involved in this process.

This CWU guest lecture is sponsored by the Department of Physics, Department of Engineering Technologies Safety and Construction, and University Advancement.

Photo: At the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), the watt
balance experiment is redefining the kilogram

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