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National Physical Laboratory Expands Usage of COMSOL Multiphysics®

The National Physical Laboratory (NPL) is the UK's National Measurement Institute and a world leading center of excellence for developing and applying the most accurate measurement standards available.

BURLINGTON, MA (January 22, 2015) National Physical Laboratory (NPL), the UK’s National Measurement Institute, has recently placed an order for COMSOL Multiphysics® simulation software and a selection of its add-on products for the modeling and simulation of measurement systems. The licenses will be used by research teams across the technical areas covered by NPL to support their work developing and validating measurement techniques.

NPL Expands Finite Element Analysis Offering

For over a century, NPL has developed and maintained primary measurement standards for the UK’s National Measurement System. NPL is committed to using cutting-edge science and technology tools to ensure the accuracy and consistency of measurement used by government, business, and society. The expanded offering of COMSOL Multiphysics and its application-specific products will enable engineers at NPL to broaden their research to include additional multiphysics effects, and will aid in the expansion of research into new areas and applications.

“NPL is pleased to be able to expand its relationship with COMSOL,” says Louise Wright, Principal Research Scientist, Mathematics & Modelling Group at NPL. “COMSOL Multiphysics has already supported the development and analysis of equipment and experiments in areas ranging from improving the realization of the international temperature scale of 1990 (ITS-90), to designing microfabricated ion traps for applications in quantum information processing, quantum metrology, and optical clocks. The new licensing agreement will help us to quickly respond to measurement challenges in new applications, and be confident in the knowledge that we are using a reliable software for our multiphysics simulations.”

With the new purchase, NPL now uses COMSOL to integrate with CAD software and to simulate systems involving acoustics, heat transfer, chemical reactions, MEMS and microfluidic devices, CFD, optics and photonics, high and low frequency electromagnetics, and other physics within the electrical, mechanical, fluid, and chemical disciplines.

“We are pleased that NPL has recognized COMSOL Multiphysics as a leading simulation software for analyzing measurement standards and calibration testing,” says Wen Zhang, Managing Director of COMSOL Ltd. “In an industry where precision and accuracy are of the utmost importance, NPL’s continued use of COMSOL Multiphysics demonstrates the software’s strength for modeling coupled physics effects in this area.”

You can learn more about one of NPL’s projects using COMSOL Multiphysics in the article “Understanding the Uncertainty of Thermometer Calibration”, which appeared in COMSOL News 2013.


COMSOL provides simulation software for product design and research to technical enterprises, research labs, and universities through 21 offices and a distributor network throughout the world. Its flagship product, COMSOL Multiphysics® and COMSOL Server™, are software environments for modeling and simulating any physics-based system and for building applications. A particular strength is its ability to account for coupled or multiphysics phenomena. Add-on products expand the simulation platform for electrical, mechanical, fluid flow, and chemical applications. Interfacing tools enable the integration of COMSOL Multiphysics® simulation with all major technical computing and CAD tools on the CAE market.


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