Metrology requires important international collaborations by its nature: it needs redundancy to ensure reliable and sustainable traceability of measurements. In addition to scientific exchanges, metrology involves participating in numerous inter-laboratory comparisons in order to validate the results obtained on the references that have been made. All RNMF researchers are strongly involved in international decision-making bodies, whether at European or international level. In addition, "researcher exchange" programmes are proposed to increase collaboration with our counterparts.

The RNMF and the Metre Convention

Due to its history, France has a rightful seat on the International Committee for Weights and Measures (CIPM, composed of only 18 people).

The RNMF is present in all CIPM Consultative Committees, and in many associated working groups (over 50).

A few facts and figures:


This is the number of RNMF participations in international key comparisons.


This is the number of RNMF participations in supplementary comparisons.


This is the number of internationally recognized calibration and measurement capabilities (CMCs) published within the CIPM MRA.

All these elements allow France to position itself as the 6th largest metrology player in the world.

In addition, the results of substantial research in recent years have enabled France to be a major player in the revision of the international system of units.

JCGM (Joint Committe for Guides in Metrology)

The JCGM, a joint committee between the BIPM and many other international organizations, such as OIML, ISO, IEC, IFCC, IUPAC or IUPAP, has the role of updating and disseminating two major metrology documents, the GUM (Guide to the Expression of Uncertainty in Measurement) and the VIM (International Vocabulary of Metrology), in two working groups, JCGM-WG1 and JCGM-WG2 respectively. LNE participates in both of these  working groups.

DOSEO platform

In the field of ionizing radiation, in dosimetry for radiotherapy, the need for connections requires particularly expensive instrumentation, such as medical accelerators. The French government implemented a new platform dedicated to radiotherapy in 2014, the DOSEO platform. In addition to the research initiated, it also enables the training of hospital and industrial physicists.

Under an agreement with the BIPM, this platform is made available to the international community for primary standard calibrations and inter-laboratory comparisons.

Hosting researchers

Each year, all RNMF laboratories welcome researchers from all over the world, whose objectives are of many kinds:

  • host foreign researchers and engineers who have specific skills necessary for the experiments developed within the framework of the national metrology programme, and support the teams
  • develop specific instruments of common interest (reception and/or missions).

A specific budget is dedicated to this activity which represents around 20 persons/month.

Cooperation agreements

Within the framework of international activities, cooperation agreements are signed with certain countries for specific activities. The latest agreements signed have more specifically concerned the field of temperature and thermal quantities.

Torricelli Institute

Signature MoU Torricelli entre INRIM et LNE 2016
Signing of the cooperation agreement between INRiM and LNE for the creation of a joint laboratory for fluid metrology research

The Torricelli institute is a joint laboratory between INRiM (Istituto Nazionale di Ricerca Metrologica - Italy) and LNE (Laboratoire national de métrologie et d'essais - France), created in 2016. It is intended to promote research in primary metrology through the development of new methods and the production of instrumentation in the fields of fluids, particularly for pressure, temperature and humidity, the thermo-physical properties of materials and gas composition.


Joint Laboratory for Cryogenic Metrology Science and Technology

Laboratoire commun France - Chine en température
Team of the Joint Laboratory for Cryogenic Metrology Science and Technology

In May 2018, an agreement was signed in Paris between the Technical Institute of Physics and Chemistry of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (TIPC-CAS) and LNE for the creation of the Joint Laboratory for Cryogenic Metrology Science and Technology.

This agreement, signed in the presence of Dr Bin Xiangli, Vice-President of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, and Mr Thomas Grenon, Director General of LNE, aims to strengthen scientific cooperation between TIPC and LNE in the field of temperature. Initiated several years ago, it has already enabled remarkable results to be obtained for the Boltzmann constant measurement as well as in the thermometry research field.