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Choosing the Right Thermometers

4/30/2012 10:30:32 AM | by Anonymous


There are many types of thermometers in the world that use different technologies to measure temperature. A thermometer is basically an instrument that measures temperature using materials that change when they are heated or cooled. For example, in a mercury thermometer, the mercury inside the glass tube expands or contracts when heated or cooled and a reading of the temperature can be taken where the mercury stops from the markings on the glass tube. Modern thermometers take readings in either Fahrenheit or degrees Celsius.


There are 3 main types of thermometers available in the market. One which we all would be familiar with is the bulb thermometer. A mercury thermometer is a bulb thermometer as it contains mercury in the bulb which expands. A replacement for mercury can be alcohol as it has similar properties to mercury. Although any liquid would work on the principal of expanding when heated and contracting when cooled, mercury and alcohol are the most commonly used and ideal as they do not require great amounts of heat to expand. These types of thermometers are most commonly found in laboratories.


Another common type of thermometers is the electronic or better known as the digital thermometers. These devices make use of a metal which changes its resistance accordingly when exposed to different temperatures. A circuit then measures this resistance of the metals and converts it to numbers displayed on a digital screen in degrees Celsius of Fahrenheit. The temperature can indicate when to turn something on or off. There are also the ear thermometers which have a great degree of accuracy. The eardrum is one of the most accurate places to take human body temperature from as well as mouth thermometers. These thermometers take body temperature by measuring the amount of heat radiated by our eardrum. A sensor picks up this radiation and converts it into numbers displayed on an LCD screen. These types of thermometers can also be used in industrial works to measure temperatures of equipment etc.

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