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The International Prototype Kilogram (IPK) is an artifact standard or prototype that is defined to be exactly one kilogram mass.

In metrology (the science of measurement), a standard (or etalon) is an object, system, or experiment that bears a defined relationship to a unit of measurement of a physical quantity.<ref>Phillip Ostwald,Jairo Muñoz, Manufacturing Processes and Systems (9th Edition)John Wiley & Sons, 1997 ISBN 978-0-471-04741-4 page 616</ref> Standards are the fundamental reference for a system of weights and measures, against which all other measuring devices are compared. Historical standards for length, volume, and mass were defined by many different authorities, which resulted in confusion and inaccuracy of measurements. Modern measurements are defined in relationship to internationally-standardized reference objects, which are used under carefully controlled laboratory conditions to define the units of length, mass, electrical potential, and other physical quantities.


Standard (metrology) sections
Intro  Hierarchy of standards  Primary reference standards  Secondary reference standards  Working standards  Laboratory Standards  References  See also  

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