Browse Entries

Use Trove to find more resources by/about this Biographical entry

  • Trove

Biographical entry Besley, Laurence Michael (Laurie) (1946 - 2013)

2 December 1946
Perth, Western Australia, Australia
22 June 2013


Laurence Besley made a major contribution to the national and international development of measurement science (metrology) through his research, leadership of national institutions and international work in metrology. On appointment to CSIRO he worked on the physics of highly accurate temperature measurement, establishing an international temperature scale and develop special low-temperature resistance thermometers. He soon became recognised internationally as expert in the field. In the 1990s he developed new measurement standards for reference gas mixtures. After periods as Director of the National Analytic Reference Laboratory and General Manager of the Chemical and Biological Metrology Branch, he was appointed as Chief Executive and Chief Metrologist of the National Measurement Institute on its foundation in 2004. His major achievement in this role was the introduction of the measurement discipline to Australian biotechnology and nanotechnology activities, and the introduction of a national system of trade measurement. He was on the editorial boards of several journals including Metrologia and Accreditation and Quality Assurance.



Education - BSc (Hons), University of Western Australia
Education - PhD, University of Western Australia
2002 - 2004
Career position - Director, National Analytic Reference Laboratory
2004 - 2007
Career position - General Manager, Chemical and Biological Metrology Branch, National Measurement Institute
2007 - 2011
Career position - Chief Executive and Chief Metrologist, National Measurement Institute
2012 - 2013
Career position - Chair, Asia Pacific Metrology Programme

Published resources

Journal Articles

  • Besley, Laurie and Heng, Yen, 'Interview: Laurie Besley', Chemistry in Australia, 2009 (August) (2009), 30-1. Details
  • Fisk, Peter and Heng, Yen, 'Laurence Besley, Metrologist and Role Model', Chemistry in Australia, 81 (4) (2014), 28. Details


Helen Cohn