The highest metrological quality of measurements can only be obtained by using primary measurement methods. Isotopic measurements can fulfil the necessary requirements. The JRC uses isotopic techniques to measure reference values for key comparisons and to certify isotopic reference materials.
In 1998, the JRC set up the Joint European Programme of Primary Isotopic Measurements (JEPPIM) network. The partners work together to establish the comparability of isotopic measurements through their traceability to the international system (SI) of units within specified uncertainties, and to provide the required isotopic reference measurements, isotopic reference materials and primary isotopic standards in a coordinated way.
Joint projects are chosen to support European policies in the fields of environment, agriculture and health. For example, the network studies CO2 samples with known isotopic ratios of carbon and oxygen which are used to improve reliability of the data needed to trace CO2 sources in the atmosphere.