The NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF STANDARDS AND TECHNOLOGY (NIST) is a measurement standards laboratory, and a non-regulatory agency of the United States Department of Commerce . Its mission is to promote innovation and industrial competitiveness.
NIST's activities are organized into laboratory programs that include Nanoscale Science and Technology, Engineering, Information Technology , Neutron Research, Material Measurement, and Physical Measurement.
* 1 History
* 1.1 Background * 1.2 Bureau of Standards
* 2.1 Metric system
* 3 Organization
* 3.1 Committees
* 4 Projects
* 4.1 Measurements and standards * 4.2 _Handbook 44_ * 4.3 Homeland security * 4.4 World Trade Center Collapse Investigation * 4.5 Election technology
* 5 People * 6 Directors * 7 Controversial Backdoored NIST Standard * 8 Publications * 9 See also * 10 References * 11 External links
The Articles of Confederation , ratified by the colonies in 1781, contained the clause, "The United States in Congress assembled shall also have the sole and exclusive right and power of regulating the alloy and value of coin struck by their own authority, or by that of the respective states—fixing the standards of weights and measures throughout the United States". Article 1, section 8, of the Constitution of the United States (1789), transferred this power to Congress; "The Congress shall have power...To coin money, regulate the value thereof, and of foreign coin, and fix the standard of weights and measures".
In January 1790, President
John Quincy Adams
BUREAU OF STANDARDS
In 1901, in response to a bill proposed by Congressman James H. Southard (R, Ohio), the National Bureau of Standards was founded with the mandate to provide standard weights and measures, and to serve as the national physical laboratory for the United States. (Southard had previously sponsored a bill for metric conversion of the United States.) Chart of NBS activities, 1915
Initially conceived as purely a metrology agency, the Bureau of
Standards was directed by
In 1948, financed by the Air Force, the Bureau began design and construction of SEAC , the Standards Eastern Automatic Computer. The computer went into operation in May 1950 using a combination of vacuum tubes and solid-state diode logic. About the same time the Standards Western Automatic Computer , was built at the Los Angeles office of the NBS and used for research there. A mobile version, DYSEAC , was built for the Signal Corps in 1954.
Due to a changing mission, the "National Bureau of Standards" became
the National Institute of Standards and
Following 9/11, NIST conducted the official investigation into the collapse of the World Trade Center buildings.
NIST, known between 1901 and 1988, as the National Bureau of Standards (NBS), is a measurement standards laboratory , also known as a National Metrological Institute (NMI), which is a non-regulatory agency of the United States Department of Commerce . The institute's official mission is to:
Promote U.S. innovation and industrial competitiveness by advancing measurement science , standards , and technology in ways that enhance economic security and improve our quality of life . — NIST
NIST had an operating budget for fiscal year 2007 (October 1, 2006 – September 30, 2007) of about $843.3 million. NIST's 2009 budget was $992 million, and it also received $610 million as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act . NIST employs about 2,900 scientists, engineers, technicians, and support and administrative personnel. About 1,800 NIST associates (guest researchers and engineers from American companies and foreign countries) complement the staff. In addition, NIST partners with 1,400 manufacturing specialists and staff at nearly 350 affiliated centers around the country. NIST publishes the _HANDBOOK 44_ that provides the "Specifications, tolerances, and other technical requirements for weighing and measuring devices".
The Congress of 1866 made use of the metric system in commerce a legally protected activity through the passage of Metric Act of 1866 . On May 20, 1875, 17 out of 20 countries signed a document known as the _Metric Convention_ or the _Treaty of the Meter_, which established the International Bureau of Weights and Measures under the control of an international committee elected by the General Conference on Weights and Measures .
Advanced Measurement Laboratory Complex in Gaithersburg Boulder Laboratories
NIST is headquartered in Gaithersburg, Maryland , and operates a facility in Boulder, Colorado . NIST's activities are organized into laboratory programs and extramural programs. Effective October 1, 2010, NIST was realigned by reducing the number of NIST laboratory units from ten to six. NIST Laboratories include:
* Center for Nanoscale Science and
Extramural programs include:
* Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), a nationwide
network of centers to assist small and mid-sized manufacturers to
create and retain jobs, improve efficiencies, and minimize waste
through process improvements and to increase market penetration with
innovation and growth strategies;
NIST's Boulder laboratories are best known for NIST‑F1 , which
houses an atomic clock . NIST‑F1 serves as the source of the
nation's official time. From its measurement of the natural resonance
frequency of cesium —which defines the second —NIST broadcasts
time signals via longwave radio station
NIST also operates a neutron science user facility: the NIST Center for Neutron Research (NCNR). The NCNR provides scientists access to a variety of neutron scattering instruments, which they use in many research fields (materials science, fuel cells, biotechnology, etc.).
The SURF III Synchrotron Ultraviolet Radiation Facility is a source
of synchrotron radiation , in continuous operation since 1961. SURF
III now serves as the US national standard for source-based radiometry
throughout the generalized optical spectrum. All
The Center for Nanoscale Science and
NIST has seven standing committees:
Technical Guidelines Development Committee (TGDC)
Advisory Committee on Earthquake Hazards Reduction (ACEHR)
* National Construction Safety Team Advisory Committee (NCST
* Information Security and Privacy Advisory Board (ISPAB)
* Visiting Committee on Advanced
A 40 nm wide NIST logo made with cobalt atoms
MEASUREMENTS AND STANDARDS
As part of its mission, NIST supplies industry, academia, government, and other users with over 1,300 Standard Reference Materials (SRMs). These artifacts are certified as having specific characteristics or component content, used as calibration standards for measuring equipment and procedures, quality control benchmarks for industrial processes, and experimental control samples.
NIST publishes the _Handbook 44_ each year after the annual meeting of the National Conference on Weights and Measures (NCWM). Each edition is developed through cooperation of the COMMITTEE ON SPECIFICATIONS AND TOLERANCES of the NCWM and the WEIGHTS AND MEASURES DIVISION (WMD) of the NIST. The purpose of the book is a partial fulfillment of the statutory responsibility for "cooperation with the states in securing uniformity of weights and measures laws and methods of inspection".
NIST has been publishing various forms of what is now the _Handbook 44_ since 1918 and began publication under the current name in 1949. The 2010 edition conforms to the concept of the primary use of the SI (metric) measurements recommended by the Omnibus Foreign Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988.
_ This section needs to be UPDATED. Please update this article to reflect recent events or newly available information. (December 2015)_
NIST is developing government-wide identity document standards for federal employees and contractors to prevent unauthorized persons from gaining access to government buildings and computer systems.
WORLD TRADE CENTER COLLAPSE INVESTIGATION
In 2002 the National Construction Safety Team Act mandated NIST to conduct an investigation into the collapse of the World Trade Center buildings 1 and 2 and the 47-story 7 World Trade Center. The "World Trade Center Collapse Investigation", directed by lead investigator Shyam Sunder, covered three aspects, including a technical building and fire safety investigation to study the factors contributing to the probable cause of the collapses of the WTC Towers (WTC 1 and 2) and WTC 7. NIST also established a research and development program to provide the technical basis for improved building and fire codes, standards, and practices, and a dissemination and technical assistance program to engage leaders of the construction and building community in implementing proposed changes to practices, standards, and codes. NIST also is providing practical guidance and tools to better prepare facility owners, contractors, architects, engineers, emergency responders, and regulatory authorities to respond to future disasters. The investigation portion of the response plan was completed with the release of the final report on 7 World Trade Center on November 20, 2008. The final report on the WTC Towers—including 30 recommendations for improving building and occupant safety—was released on October 26, 2005.
NIST works in conjunction with the Technical Guidelines Development Committee of the Election Assistance Commission to develop the Voluntary Voting System Guidelines for voting machines and other election technology. Further information: Certification of voting machines
Four scientific researchers at NIST have been awarded Nobel Prizes for work in physics : William D. Phillips in 1997, Eric A. Cornell in 2001, John L. Hall in 2005 and David J. Wineland in 2012, which is the largest number for any US government laboratory. All four were recognized for their work related to laser cooling of atoms, which is directly related to the development and advancement of the atomic clock. In 2011, Dan Shechtman was awarded the Nobel in chemistry for his work on quasicrystals in the Metallurgy Division from 1982 to 1984. In addition, John Cahn was awarded the 2011 Kyoto Prize for Materials Science, and the National Medal of Science has been awarded to NIST researchers Cahn (1998) and Wineland (2007). Other notable people who have worked at NIST include:
* Milton Abramowitz * James S. Albus * Ferdinand Brickwedde * Lyman James Briggs * Edgar Buckingham * John M. Butler * William Coblentz * Ronald Colle * Philip J. Davis * Hugh L. Dryden * Jack Edmonds * Ugo Fano * Charlotte Froese Fischer * Tim Foecke * John Garand * Katharine Blodgett Gebbie * Douglas Hartree * Magnus Hestenes * Russell A. Kirsch * Cornelius Lanczos * Wilfrid Basil Mann * William C. Martin * William Frederick Meggers * Christopher Monroe * James G. Nell * Frank W. J. Olver * Ward Plummer * Jacob Rabinow * Richard Saykally * Charlotte Moore Sitterly * Irene Stegun * Bill Stone
Main article: List of directors of the National Institute of
Since 1989, the director of NIST has been a Presidential appointee and is confirmed by the United States Senate , and since that year the average tenure of NIST directors has fallen from 11 years to 2 years in duration. Since the 2011 reorganization of NIST, the director also holds the title of Under Secretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology. Fifteen individuals have officially held the position (in addition to four acting directors who have served on a temporary basis).
CONTROVERSIAL BACKDOORED NIST STANDARD
NIST responded to the allegations, stating that "NIST works to publish the strongest cryptographic standards possible" and that it uses "a transparent, public process to rigorously vet our recommended standards". The agency stated that "there has been some confusion about the standards development process and the role of different organizations in it...The National Security Agency (NSA) participates in the NIST cryptography process because of its recognized expertise. NIST is also required by statute to consult with the NSA." Recognizing the concerns expressed, the agency reopened the public comment period for the SP800-90 publications, promising that "if vulnerabilities are found in these or any other NIST standards, we will work with the cryptographic community to address them as quickly as possible”. Due to public concern of this cryptovirology attack, NIST rescinded the EC-DRBG algorithm from the NIST SP 800-90 standard.
The _Journal of Research of the National Institute of Standards and
* ISO/IEC 17025 – used by testing and calibration laboratories
* International System of Units , see International Bureau of Weights and Measures * National Software Reference Library * NIST hash function competition * Smart Grid Interoperability Panel * Technical Report Archive -webkit-column-width: 30em; column-width: 30em; list-style-type: decimal;">
* ^ "2016 Appropriations Increase NIST Funding 166 percent".
_NIST_. 2016. Retrieved 2016-01-13.
* ^ NBS special publication 447-Retrieved 2011-09-28
* ^ _A_ _B_ Records of the National Institute of Standards and