Accuracy is an important factor in the results in a laboratory. It is always defined as the value which is closest to the standard measurement standards. This kind of precision measurement ensures that nothing is left to the guesswork. Hence, the benefits of laboratory balance lie in its ability to achieve this accuracy and precision.
Balance weighing machine measures the mass of an object to a very high degree of precision. They usually consist of a beam along with a fulcrum that is friction-free; a pointer attached to the beam and to amplify deviation from the balance position, and fractional weights to be applied along the beam’s measuring arm. These balances have the capability to measure parts of milligrams to parts of grams and kilograms. The two types of weighing balance used in the laboratory are analytical balances and top loader balances. These can be further categorized into electronic balance machine and digital weighing machine.
In order to make sure that the object being weighed shows accurate results, the following four factors are kept in mind:
Calibration refers to the evaluation and adjustment of the accuracy and precision of the measurement equipment or instrument. It is the weight reading comparison of the mass level under consideration. Calibration is usually undertaken at full capability and aims to lower or remove bias in an instrument’s readings over a range of continuous values.
Reproducibility is the degree of agreement between the results of experiments, whether undertaken by different individuals, at different locations or with different equipment for a specific object. It determines if the results can be replicated repeatedly for an object. It can also be referred to as the standard deviation to determine the balance.
Linearity is an indicator of the fact whether the measurement is consistent over the entire range of measurements. It is a useful factor to determine the correspondence of instrument measurement to reality.
Also known as shift test or eccentricity test, this factor checks the accuracy of readings by measuring the weight of the object on different quadrants on the weighing instrument. Ideally, an object should generate similar reading irrespective of its position on the weighing instrument. If this is not done, then the results may turn out inaccurate.
The uses of weighing the balance in a laboratory can’t be undermined in uncovering malfunctions and eliminating inaccuracies at the early stages of experiments.
Also read: Tips to Maintain Your Laboratory Equipment.