Catalogue description Admiralty: Naval Ordnance Inspection Department, later Division: Laboratory Reports

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Details of ADM 257
Reference: ADM 257
Title: Admiralty: Naval Ordnance Inspection Department, later Division: Laboratory Reports

Reports of laboratories operating under the auspices of the Naval Ordnance Inspection Department in particular the Bragg Laboratory in Sheffield and the laboratory at Caerwent. They relate to chemical and metallurgical testing undertaken in connection with weapons and ammunition for the fleet. Some of the reports are the copies sent to Admiralty Centre for Scientific Information and liaison (ACSIL).

Date: 1940-1969
Related material:

For records of the Royal Ordnance Factories see:

Further reports of ACSIL are in ADM 213



Records of the Ordnance Select Committee, etc after 1855 are in SUPP 6

Held by: The National Archives, Kew
Legal status: Public Record(s)
Language: English

Board of Admiralty, Naval Ordnance Inspection Department, 1922-1984

Physical description: 158 files and volumes
Administrative / biographical background:

The Naval Ordnance Inspection Department (NOID) was formed under the Chief Inspector of Naval Ordnance (CINO) in 1922 to avoid the deficiencies in quality of guns and ammunition which had previously become evident after the battles of the Falkland Islands and Jutland, amongst others in the First World War. An area organisation was created to supervise the new manufacture of weapons and empty and filled ammunition, to carry out proof firing at the various ranges, and to provide a world-wide service to the fleet based on gunwharfs and ammunition depots. This was later extended to torpedo manufacture and ranging, and to mines.

In later years reorganisations caused new names to be given to NOID; firstly, Directorate of Weapons Quality (DWQ(N)), then, Directorate of Naval Ordnance Services (DN Ord S), and later Directorate of Technical Services (Warship Equipment) (DTS(WE)).

A laboratory for conducting metallurgical testing and instrumentation work for CINO was opened in Sheffield before World War Two, and was known as the Bragg Laboratory from 1938 onwards. In the course of time it came to employ a wide range of chemical and physical analytical techniques, but the organisation and functions remained largely unchanged until 1968. At that time the chemical work was separated to become part of the Directorate of Chemical Inspection [later Directorate Quality Assurance (Material)-MQAD], Army Department, at Woolwich. The laboratory continued, with reduced work, as the Naval Ordnance Inspection [later Service] and Metallurgical Unit (NOIMU, later NOSMU). The unit was finally closed in 1984, its work being transferred to Woolwich.

A subsidiary laboratory, dealing with propellants, existed at the Royal Naval Propellant Factory, Caerwent, Chepstow, until 1971.

Staff were sent from the Caerwent laboratory to man the tetryl laboratory which re-opened at the Royal Naval Cordite Factory, Holton Heath, in 1946. In 1947 the Admiralty Materials Laboratory was formed at the factory.

The Naval Ordnance Gauge Factory, Sheffield, was also under the supervision of NOID.

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