In order for petroleum laboratory measurements to be accurate, all instrumentation must be calibrated to
standard. This ensures that the laboratory test measurements give an accurate account of the condition and
quality of the samples being tested.
PART A - DEVELOP A LABORATORY EQUIPMENT SOP
Calibration Standard Operating Procedures: When establishing a calibration SOP, the following sections are
Purpose: This section describes the purpose of preparing and maintaining the SOP.
Scope: This section describes the broad concepts of equipment calibration, proper record keeping, and
training of personnel.
Responsibilities: This section describes the specific responsibilities of all personnel assigned to the
Procedures: This section describes the procedures to be followed concerning equipment calibration,
identification of equipment that needs calibration, procedures for establishing calibration schedules,
procedures for internal C level and external A level calibration, safety and environmental considerations
to be addressed during operator calibration procedures, record keeping, and personnel training on a
daily, weekly, monthly, etc., basis. Instructions for calibrating equipment are in the applicable TMs.
Record Keeping: This section describes the purpose, use, instructions for completion, and disposition of
forms and other record keeping systems that must be followed.
Equipment Maintenance: This section lists the equipment and systems that must be calibrated on a
Miscellaneous: This section contains other specifics such as definitions, when to use/not use specific
forms, symbols, special instructions, and calibration of equipment.
References: This section lists the references used to guide personnel in SOP procedures.
When implementing a calibration SOP, the following steps are included:
Identification of equipment that requires calibration.
Establishment of a calibration schedule for each piece of equipment.
Establishment of procedures for internal C level calibration.
Identification of external agencies for A level calibration.
Identification of safety and environmental considerations to be addressed during operator calibration
PART B - IMPLEMENT A LABORATORY EQUIPMENT CALIBRATION SOP
Calibration requirements. These can be found in TB 43-180, applicable ASTM methods, (Military
Standard) MIL-STD-978, and TB 750-25.
Personnel requirements. According to AR 750-25, all petroleum laboratory personnel are responsible for
ensuring all of the laboratory equipment listed in TB 43-180 is periodically calibrated.
Calibration logs. Though not required, these have proven valuable in maintaining an equipment audit
trail. They can then be used to schedule the C level calibration workload within the laboratory and A
level calibration by the TMDE personnel.
Calibration of test kits. In addition to petroleum laboratory equipment, components of the test kits may
also require calibration. The sampling and gaging kit contains an innage tape and bob that must be
periodically calibrated. Kits that contain thermohydrometers or thermometers and hydrometers will need
calibration. Personnel responsible for the operation of these kits should contact the nearest mobile or
base petroleum laboratory for C level calibration support. Most of the time, a one for one exchange of
each item of equipment can be arranged. The captured fuels test kit does not require calibration.
A level calibration. A level calibration is not performed by petroleum laboratory personnel. It is
performed by personnel from a TMDE calibration center. Petroleum laboratories can either schedule a
TMDE calibration laboratory team to perform A level calibration on site or send the equipment to a
TMDE calibration and repair center, or a combination of both. The chosen method depends on the
regulations and policies within the specific command. Laboratories sending equipment for calibration