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Emile Webster

Research Scientist

Metrologist in contact thermometry

Contact Details

Areas of Expertise

  • Acoustic instrumentation and measurement
  • Data acquisition systems
  • Instrument communications systems
  • NI LabVIEW/Vision programming
  • Powder flow and density measurement
  • Thermocouple temperature/homogeneity measurements


PhD in Process and Instrumentation Engineering

View Publications for Emile Webster >>


Within MSL I have the responsibility of maintaining a thermocouple research and testing capability, sufficient to offer calibration services to industry and to disseminate information on best practice when employing thermocouple measurements. I am also actively involved in providing LabVIEW software solutions within the temperature standards team and MSL. This work is part of contact thermometry, an area within temperature standards.

I started my working career as an electronics service technician after finishing an NZCEE (CIT) in the early 1990's. Later I gave up employment to pursue a BSc in Physics and BA in Philosophy at Victoria University, completing the final parts of my BA at Waikato University. After moving back to Wellington, I took up employment at the engineering school at Massey University in Wellington. During this time at Massey I started a PhD, Investigation of Acoustical Methods for Volumetric and Bulk Density Determination of Solids, Liquids and Particles using the Helmholtz Resonator. While completing my doctorate, I was offered a position at the Riddet Institute (CORE) in Palmerston North, working on the engineering aspects of a Milk powder modification process. After two years, I shifted jobs to MSL temperature standards.

Historically Temperature standards (MSL) had no thermocouple calibration capability, which was a problem as most industrial temperature measurements are made with thermocouples. When I started at MSL I was first tasked with designing/modifying equipment and writing instrumentation software, suitable for thermocouple investigation and measurement. However, the equipment we were designing quickly superseded anything that had been built before. The new systems and equipment could reveal previously unknown effects in thermocouple alloys, uncovering a hidden world of temperature induced structure changes. As such it was clear no immediate thermocouple calibration service could be offered by MSL until many of these problems could be quantified and methods developed to either eliminate or mitigate them. From this work many peer-reviewed papers have now been published that describe the drift processes in both industrial and reference thermocouples. MSL is now close to offering a thermocouple calibration service.