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What to Know About the Barometer

A barometer is one of the devices that are important for use in meteorology. It is used in the measurement of the atmospheric pressure. The observation of the air pressure tendencies can be important in the forecast of the weather changes. Historians indicate that the barometers have been in use since 1700s. This was mostly after researchers had noted that air has weight and can also be used to forecast the changes in the weather.

There are various barometers that have been invented and used over the years. However there are some that are more commonly used than the others. Some of these include a mercury barometer which is the one that is usually commonly used. This has a tube that is made of glass and is usually closed on one side. It also has a reservoir that has mercury at the base. As a result of its weight, there is a creation of a vacuum at the top of the tube and this leads to the adjustment of the column’s weight that has the mercury. When the air pressure goes up, more force is exerted on a reservoir and this makes the mercury to rise higher within the column. When the pressure goes down, the mercury will drop to a level that is lower.

Even though the barometer has been in use for many centuries, there have been numerous changes to its design to improve it. The changes have been used to make it more sensitive, better, easier to carry and even work with. Even though there are other liquids that can be used in it, mercury is commonly used. The mercury’s density enables the barometer to be of a size that is manageable.

The water-based barometer is made of glass that has a sealed body and is usually half filled with water. There is a narrow tube connecting the body of the container below the level of water surface and rising above the water level. The Aneroid barometer which is infrequently used is made of a metal box that is flexible and is referred to as an aneroid cell. A strong spring prevents the capsules from collapsing.

The role of the barometer is to record air pressure changes in the weather and hence help in weather forecasting. This is due to the fact that there is a change in the weather patterns as a result of the changes in the regions that has very low or high pressures. Where there is a rise in the air pressure in a slow manner usually a period of over one or two weeks, it is an indicator that not only has the weather settled but it will remain the same for a period of time. Where there is a sudden decrease in pressure, it is usually a sign that there is a storm that is approaching. The storm will usually last for a short period of time but it will usually bring along some strong winds and heavy rains with it.