ASTM E542 - 01(2012)

    Standard Practice for Calibration of Laboratory Volumetric Apparatus

    Active Standard ASTM E542 | Developed by Subcommittee: E41.01

    Book of Standards Volume: 14.04


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    Significance and Use

    4.1 The primary purpose of this practice is to provide uniform procedures that may be used to accurately calibrate a wide variety of volumetric ware. The techniques are simple in concept and can provide reliable results, provided the procedures are followed faithfully. Accordingly, the practice should provide a means for checking the original calibration of glassware and similar apparatus and for periodic rechecks as the need should arise.

    4.2 Borosilicate volumetric glassware will hold its calibration indefinitely provided that it is not exposed to hydrofluoric acid, hot phosphoric acid, or strong, hot alkalis, and that it is not heated above 150°C when dry. A frosting of the glass surface (viewed when dry) indicates that chemical attack has occured, and recalibration may be in order. As a precaution, however, it is recommended that the glassware be recalibrated after ten years of service regardless of its appearance.

    4.3 Soda-lime volumetric glassware will become frosted with time because of attack from moisture in the atmosphere as well as from the chemicals mentioned above. In addition, it should not be heated above 90°C when dry. It is recommended, therefore, that it be recalibrated after five years of service unless frosting (viewed when dry) is observed sooner.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This practice covers procedures for use in the calibration of volumetric ware, in accordance with Specification E694 such as is in common use in chemical and clinical laboratories. It is based on the gravimetric determination of the quantity of water either contained or delivered, and the conversion of this value to true volume at the standard temperature of 20°C by means of suitable equations and standard tables. Calibration using mercury is excluded. Calibration may be performed using alternative gravimetric methodology, provided that it is demonstrated and documented that the results obtained are equivalent to those obtained using the methodology described herein.

    1.2 This practice is intended to encompass capacity ware between the limits of 0.1 cm3 and 2000 cm3. Typical products falling within the purview of this practice are burets graduated“ to deliver”, graduated cylinders, volumetric flasks, specific gravity flasks, measuring and dilution pipets, and transfer and capacity pipets.

    1.3 The procedures are not recommended for calibration of apparatus with capacities below 0.1 cm3, such as microglassware.

    1.4 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.


    2. Referenced Documents (purchase separately) The documents listed below are referenced within the subject standard but are not provided as part of the standard.

    ASTM Standards

    E694 Specification for Laboratory Glass Volumetric Apparatus


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 17.060 (Measurement of volume, mass, density, viscosity)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code 41121500(Pipettes and liquid handling equipment and supplies)


    DOI: 10.1520/E0542-01R12

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