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Department of Mechanical Engineering




N.V. RAGHAVENDRA Professor & Head

Department of Mechanical Engineering The National Institute of Engineering



Department of Mechanical Engineering The National Institute of Engineering




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First published in 2013

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ISBN-13: 978-0-19-808549-2 ISBN-10: 0-19-808549-4

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Dedicated to our revered guru and mentor, Dr T.R. Seetharam




About the Authors

N.V. Raghavendra is Professor and Head, Department of Mechanical Engineering, the National Institute of Engineering (NIE), Mysore. He has more than 25 years of teaching and research experience. A Ph D holder from the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), his doctoral research area was on ‘Acquisition of Technological Capability and Economic Performance in Clusters’, done with an objective to understand the major factors that influence acquisition of technological capability (especially in smaller firms) and also recommend policy measures for their growth and sustenance. Dr Raghavendra was a member of the Implementation Committee of the prestigious VTU–Bosch Rexroth Centre of Automation Technology, Mysore. He has also served as the Special Officer of the VTU–Bosch Rexroth Centre, Mysore from September 2007 to December 2008 and Director of the NIE–Eicher Centre for Automobile Technology, NIE, from January 2011 to January 2013.

L. Krishnamurthy is Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, the National Institute of Engineering, Mysore. He has more than 25 years of teaching cum research experience. Prof. Krishnamurthy holds a doctoral degree from Kuvempu University, Karnataka. His research area was on ‘Machinability Studies on Metal Matrix Hybrid Composites’. He co-investigates the research project titled ‘Characterization of Composite Materials and Application of Nanomaterials for Sustainable Energy’ sanctioned by Nano Mission, Department of Science and Technology, Government of India.




The origin of metrology can be traced to the Industrial Revolution, which began in Western Europe and the United States in the beginning of the 19th century. This period saw a transition from manual to mechanized production and the setting up of factories to manufacture iron and textiles. There was a paradigm shift from artisan-oriented production methods to mass production. An artisan produced an article the same way a storage shelf is built in a closet— by trial and error till the parts fit. Mass production called for division of labour and precise definition of production tasks. Tasks became specialized, requiring skilled people who worked on only a portion of the job, but completed it quickly and efficiently. The workers’ wages were determined by a ‘piece-rate’ system. They were only paid for the good parts; thus it became necessary to define what a good part was. This led to the design of inspection gauges and the need for an inspector who could decide whether a part was good or not. In 1913, Henry Ford, an American idustrialist, perfected the assembly line system to produce cars. In order to ensure quality as well as high production rates, new methods of inspection and quality control were initiated, which perhaps formed the basis of modern metrology.

Engineering metrology deals with the applications of measurement science in manufacturing processes. It provides a means of assessing the suitability of measuring instruments, their calibration, and the quality control of manufactured components. A product that is not manufactured according to metrological specifications will have to incur heavy costs to comply with the specifications later. Any compromise in quality creates rapid negative sentiments in the market and the cost of recovering the original market position would be quite high. Today, metrological error has a far greater impact on cost than in the past. Hence, an organization should strive towards a zero-defect regime in order to survive in a highly competitive market. Ensuring this aspect of manufacturing is the responsibility of a quality control engineer, who must be completely familiar with the basics of measurement, standards and systems of measurement, tolerances, measuring instruments, and their limitations.