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List of terms related to Laboratory

Editor-In-Chief: Henry A. Hoff

File:Los Alamos aerial view.jpeg
Los Alamos National Laboratory Credit: Los Alamos National Laboratory.

A laboratory is a construct you create so as to produce reproducible measurements.

Theoretical laboratory

Def. "a room, building or institution equipped for scientific research, experimentation or analysis"[1] is called a laboratory.


Laboratory conditions are often expressed in terms of standard temperature and pressure.

Standard condition for temperature and pressure are standard sets of conditions for experimental measurements established to allow comparisons to be made between different sets of data. The most used standards are those of the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), although these are not universally accepted standards. Other organizations have established a variety of alternative definitions for their standard reference conditions.

In chemistry, IUPAC established standard temperature and pressure (informally abbreviated as STP) as a temperature of 273.15 K (0 °C, 32 °F) and an absolute pressure of 100 kPa (14.504 psi, 0.986 atm, 1 bar),[2] An unofficial, but commonly used standard is standard ambient temperature and pressure (SATP) as a temperature of 298.15 K (25 °C, 77 °F) and an absolute pressure of 100 kPa (14.504 psi, 0.986 atm). The STP and the SATP should not be confused with the standard state commonly used in thermodynamic evaluations of the Gibbs free energy of a reaction.

"Standard conditions for gases: Temperature, 273.15 K [...] and pressure of 105 pascals. The previous standard absolute pressure of 1 atm (equivalent to 1.01325 × 105 Pa) was changed to 100 kPa in 1982. IUPAC recommends that the former pressure should be discontinued."[2]

NIST uses a temperature of 20 °C (293.15 K, 68 °F) and an absolute pressure of 101.325 kPa (14.696 psi, 1 atm). The International Standard Metric Conditions for natural gas and similar fluids are 288.15 K (59.00 °F, 15.00 °C) and 101.325 kPa.[3]


File:Measuring Tape Inch+CM.jpg
A typical tape measure with both metric and US units is shown to measure two US pennies. Credit: Stilfehler.

Def. any act of quantifying relative to a standard is called a measurement.

Machine shops

An astronomy machine shop is occasionally shared with physicists. Credit: Michigan State University.

"Our objective is to design, build, and maintain the highest quality research and teaching instruments, while always keeping finished cost to a minimum and safety to a maximum."[4]

"I asked him where he had it made, he said he made it himself, & when I asked him where he got his tools said he made them himself & laughing added if I had staid for other people to make my tools & things for me... I had never made any thing..."[5]


  1. A laboratory can be set up in virtual space to test reality for reproducibility.

See also


  1. laboratory. San Francisco, California: Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. September 21, 2013. Retrieved 2013-09-30.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Alan D. McNaught, Andrew Wilkinson (1997). Compendium of Chemical Terminology, The Gold Book (2nd ed.). Blackwell Science. ISBN 0-86542-684-8.
  3. Natural gas – Standard reference conditions (ISO 13443). Geneva, Switzerland: International Organization for Standardization. 1996.
  4. Astronomy machine shop (December 12, 2013). Department of Physics and Astronomy Machine Shop. Lansing, Michigan USA: Michigan State University. Retrieved 2013-12-12.
  5. Isaac Newton, recorded by his niece's husband, John Conduitt (August 31, 1726). Isaac Newton's recollection. Cambridge, UK: King's College. Retrieved 2013-12-12.

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