The word 'meteorology' was coined from a research book called 'Meteorologica' which was written by Aristotle, a Greek scientist and philosopher. This early work described the science of earth like its geology, elements, hydrology, seas, wind and weather. In the modern term, the term meteorology explains a complete science. It is for understanding the dynamics of atmosphere and forecasting weather phenomena like hurricanes and thunderstorms.Weather forecasting was practiced since the beginning of time with more or less accuracy. Historical records show several examples of weather predicting methods based on observing surrounding elements.
Meteorology is the interdisciplinary scientific study of the atmosphere that focuses on weather processes and short term forecasting (in contrast with climatology). Studies in the field stretch back millennia, though significant progress in meteorology did not occur until the eighteenth century. The nineteenth century saw breakthroughs occur after observing networks developed across several countries. Breakthroughs in weather forecasting were achieved in the latter half of the twentieth century, after the development of the computer.
Sky is undoubtedly the first indicator used in meteorology its cover and nature of clouds provides clues of the upcoming temperature and weather. The wind factor is also important and is associated with temperature and often rains. Animals and birds are also known to give indications about the future weather. Scientists across the world since ancient times have tried to understand the meteorological phenomena like wind and rain. Many instruments for measuring wind power, humidity and rain were invented in the early 15th century.
During the 17th century, several discoveries tipped in favor of scientific meteorology. A device to measure temperature was invented by Galileo Galilei and the factor that atmospheric pressure was linked to altitude was discovered by Blaise Pascal. The invention of barometer by Evangelista Torricelli is significantly the most important discovery. It is still in use today which indicates atmospheric pressure changes that are linked with the future weather changes. There are also other methods which have been evolved. Meteorology is a lot related with cycles and their analysis which was what Fernando II de Medici wanted to prove. He carried out a very determined program in 1654 for recording weather patterns in different European cities with a view to compile data and make their analysis.
Other breakthroughs were followed in the 18th century and science was taken to a new level. A modern mercury based thermometer was invented by Gabriel Fahrenheit. Theories about hydrodynamics were devised by Daniel Bernoulli and those theories had helped greatly in understanding the atmospheric changes. When the theory of thermodynamics and atmospheric pressures were adapted, no real changes were important for understanding meteorology. In recent times, focus has been given on meteorological tools for its improvement and attaining better accuracy results. A tremendous boost was given to meteorology because of the technology in two ways. The first is the ability to communicate results and analysis with timing, it was made possible due to the invention of telegraph. The second is the ability of probing skies with using balloons, satellites and radars. Meteorology is a part of our everyday lives. People are kept updated about the changing weather with dedicated channels and mobile devices. The science is still progressing and is an important element of the economy with many industries like agriculture and civil aviation depending on it.
Invention of weather instruments
By defintion the weather is "the state of the atmosphere at a given time and place, with respect to variables such as temperature, moisture, wind velocity, and barometric pressure.“
Types of Weather Instruments
Measuring the Weather In the early days of the Weather Bureau numerous clever mechanical devices were invented to measure and record any and every meteorological (weather) parameter conceivable: ombroscope or rainfall recorder, mechanical anemometer or wind speed indicator, remote readout wind vane, pole star recorder.
Mechanical Anemometer In 1450, the Italian art architect Leon Battista Alberti invented the first mechanical anemometer. This instrument consisted of a disk placed perpendicular to the wind. It would rotate by the force of the wind, and by the angle of inclination of the disk the wind force momentary showed itself. The same type of anemometer was later re-invented by Englishman Robert Hooke who is often mistakenly considered the inventor of the first anemometer. The Mayans were also building wind towers (anemometers) at the same time as Hooke. Another reference credits Wolfius as re-inventing the anemometer in 1709.
Hemispherical Cup Anemometer The hemispherical cup anemometer (still used today) was invented in 1846 by Irish researcher, John Thomas Romney Robinson and consisted of four hemispherical cups. The cups rotated horizontally with the wind and a combination of wheels recorded the number of revolutions in a given time. Want to build your own hemispherical cup anemometer.
Sonic Anemometer A sonic anemometer determines instantaneous wind speed and direction (turbulence) by measuring how much sound waves traveling between a pair of transducers are sped up or slowed down by the effect of the wind. The sonic anemometer was invented by geologist Dr. Andreas Pflitsch in 1994.
Barometer - Pronunciation: [b u rom´ u t u r] - a barometer is an instrument for measuring atmospheric pressure. Two common types are the aneroid barometer and the mercurial barometer (invented first). Evangelista Torricelli invented the first barometer, known as the "Torricelli's tube".
Biography - Evangelista Torricelli Evangelista Torricelli was born October 15, 1608, in Faenza, Italy and died October 22, 1647 in Florence, Italy. He was a physicist and mathematician. In 1641, Evangelista Torricelli moved to Florence to assist the astronomer Galileo.
The Barometer It was Galileo that suggested Evangelista Torricelli use mercury in his vacuum experiments. Torricelli filled a four-foot long glass tube with mercury and inverted the tube into a dish. Some of the mercury did not escape from the tube and Torricelli observed the vacuum that was created.Evangelista Torricelli became the first scientist to create a sustained vacuum and to discover the principle of a barometer. Torricelli realized that the variation of the height of the mercury from day to day was caused by changes in the atmospheric pressure. Torricelli built the first mercury barometer around 1644.
Evangelista Torricelli - Other Research Evangelista Torricelli also wrote on the quadrature of the cycloid and conics, the rectifications of the logarithmic spiral, the theory of the barometer, the value of gravity found by observing the motion of two weights connected by a string passing over a fixed pulley, the theory of projectiles and the motion of fluids.
Lucien Vidie - Aneroid Barometer In 1843, the French scientist Lucien Vidie invented the aneroid barometer. A aneroid barometer "registers the change in the shape of an evacuated metal cell to measure variations on the atmospheric pressure." Aneriod means fluidless, no liquids are used, the metal cell is usually made of phosphor bronze or beryllium copper.
Altimeter The altimeter is an instrument which measures vertical distance with respect to a reference level.The altimeter is an instrument that measures the altitude of the land surface or any object such as an airplane. Louis Paul Cailletet was the French physicist who invented the altimeter and the high-pressure manometer.
Louis Paul Cailletet (1832-1913)French physicist and inventor who in 1877-78 was the first to liquefy oxygen, hydrogen, nitrogen, and air.
Radio AltimeterLloyd Espenschied invented the first radio altimeter in 1924. In 1938, the fm radio altimeter was first demonstrated in New York by Bell Labs. In the first public display of the device, radio signals were bounced off the ground, showing pilots the altitude of an aircraft.