Pursuant to the Precious Metal Articles Act (RS Official Gazette No. 4/06) the RS Metrology Institute functions (MIRS) functions as a national institution responsible for systematical management of the precious metals field.
It comprises an adequate national reference laboratory - Department for chemical measurements - which carries out quantitative chemical analyses of precious metal alloys.
Department for chemical measurements is the leading national laboratory responsible for chemical analysis of precious metals (Au, Ag, Pt and Pd) and hallmarking of precious metal articles. It is also participates in the development and co-ordination of the laws governing the precious metals field, as well as other regulations in the field of chemical metrology. The Department operates at two locations, in Ljubljana and Celje. It is organised at the highest scientific level, taking into account the recommendations of quality assurance and good laboratory practice. The Department`s associates: one Ph.D. of chemistry, two B.Sc. of chemistry and four chemical technicians, are highly trained specialists in precious metal assaying, so that different analytical measurements are daily performed on the recently updated measuring equipment.
Instruments, including a cupellation furnace, XRF and ICP-AES units, have been purchased within the scope of the Phare COP 97 project. Additionally, the working place and the facilities of the Celje Laboratory have been renovated recently. This will provide for successful implementation of all planned activities, which are mainly focused on:
- rapid and accurate performance of chemical analyses and provision of hallmarking services to the customers,
- precious metal articles production control and inspection of the corresponding testing laboratories,
- organisation of the Department in line with the requirements of the ISO 17025 standard,
- research work in the field of precious metal analysis and metrology in chemistry
The Laboratory accredited by Slovenian Accreditation according to EN/ISO/IEC 17025, applies the following analytical methods for the quantitative chemical analysis of precious metal alloys:
- platinum: the X-ray fluorescent spectroscopy method
- gold: cupellation document SIST EN ISO 11426 (acreditated method), the X-ray fluorescent spectroscopy method
- palladium: the X-ray fluorescent spectroscopy method
- silver: potentiometric titration method document ISO 13756 (acreditated method), the X-ray fluorescent spectroscopy method
Republic of Slovenia is a member od international Convetion on Control and Marking of Artikles of Precious Metals since 2009, thus MIRS Deapartment for chemical measurements has been notified as the national Assay Office.
MIRS with its Department for chemical measurements is also a fully entitled member of the IAEO - International Association of Assay Offices (since 1997), which enables it to take an effective part in various inter-laboratory comparison tests.