A look into the NRC face behind the digital technology: Dr. Ryan White

- Ottawa, Ontario

Dr. Ryan White

Metrology is developing in extraordinary and dynamic ways though digital technology. On the occasion of World Metrology Day, we invite you to learn more about Ryan White, Sector Lead for Digital Metrology within the Metrology Research Centre!

Ryan lives in a digital world – and not because of the pandemic. He and his team are in the early days of digital transformation, and their collaborators are spread across the globe, so all meetings, data modeling and most of their work happens over the wire.

Ryan primarily focuses on the building blocks for digital infrastructure that metrologists will rely on to deliver digital services in the future – the foundations of the foundations, as it were. The effort is currently focused within the National Metrology Institute community but as these building blocks mature, the need for collaboration across multiple organizations will grow. Even within the Research Centre there is no "one size fits all" approach and digital transformation will look and feel different for each metrology area. There is also an intersectional element, in that the Digital SI does not only impact measurement but also many related activities, such as quality management, laboratory accreditation and academic collaboration.

One of the essential aspects of this activity is the creation, storage and dissemination of metrology data to increase its impact. "Technology has evolved enough that data can be accessed from anywhere by anyone, not just in specialized domains like particle physics," shares Ryan. "It is just a matter of ensuring the data is fit-for-purpose. We are very close to having the ability to use data to address global challenges in near real-time, as they arise."

Throughout the years, Ryan has learned that metrologists have unique knowledge which can be passed down to end-users via digital means to bring increased value and trust in measurement. He and his team believe that everyone in quality infrastructure has a big role to play in digital transformation.