Difference between Calibration, testing and validation

A calibration is a process that compares a known (the standard) against an unknown (the customer's device). During the calibration process, the offset between these two devices is quantified and the customer's device is adjusted back into tolerance (if possible). A true calibration usually contains both "as found" and "as left" data. 

measurement uncertainty - parameter, associated with the result of a measurement, that characterizes the dispersion of the values that could reasonably be attributed to the measurand. (International Vocabulary of Basic and General Terms in Metrology) 

calibration - a set of operations that establish, under specified conditions, the relationship between values of quantities indicated by a measuring instrument or measuring system or values represented by a material measure or a reference material, and the corresponding values realized by the standard. 

NOTES
1. The result of a calibration permits either the assignment of values or measurands to the indications or the determination of corrections with respect to indications.
2. A calibration may also determine other metrological properties such as the effect of influence quantities.
3. The result of a calibration may be recorded in a document sometimes called a calibration certificate or a calibration report. (International Vocabulary of Basic and General Terms in Metrology)

test - technical operation that consists of the determination of one or more characteristics of a given product, process or service according to a specified procedure. 

inspection - evaluation for conformity by measuring, observing, testing or gauging the relevant characteristics, activity such as measuring, examining, testing or gauging one or more characteristics of an entity and comparing the results with specified requirements in order to establish whether conformity is achieved for each characteristic. 

certification - procedure by which a third party gives written assurance that a product, process or service conforms to specified requirements. 

verification - conformation by examination and provision of objective evidence that specified requirements have been fulfilled. 

validation - confirmation by examination and provision of objective evidence that the particular requirements for a specific intended use are fulfilled. 

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