It should come as no surprise then, that gravity plays a vital role in the functioning of a Galileo thermometer. He also invented the thermoscope, which operates based on the same principles that make a Galileo thermometer work. A parcel of air heats up and rises as it becomes less dense than the air surrounding it. Changing temperatures cause the colorful orbs to either sink or float inside the glass tube. This is the key to how the Galileo thermometer works. ​Remember to join my  Mailing List  to be informed whenever a new article is released, and share new developments and helpful hints & tips. At the same time, the bubbles with a density lower than that of the water will begin to sink to the bottom of the tube. It is the very principle that all vessels designed to float on top of the water, are based upon. Defining Humidity And Its Characteristics. It is the numbered metal tags hanging below each bubble, that changes the "density" of each globe. Rainbow Facts: What Is A Rainbow And How Does It Occur? The weight of each tag is slightly different from the others. The Galileo thermometer is certainly not the most precise instrument in the world but it is certainly clever. How Does A Galileo Thermometer Work? Centuries ago, trying to measure the atmospheric temperature proofed to be quite a daunting task. Gravity is the Earth's force that pulls all objects in the atmosphere towards its center, regardless of the mass and shape of the object.         The temperature is read by looking at tag attached to the lowest floating bulb. This is because it has a much higher density than the similarly sized foam. Part 2: “Does a Galileo thermometer actually work?” This one’s easy. Although this specific thermometer as we know it today, wasn't designed by Galileo himself, all the principles that the thermometer is based upon, was discovered and implemented by Galileo and his thermoscope. The temperature can be read by interpreting the distribution of these bubbles. Galileo discovered that the density of a liquid varies slightly with temperature. Until next time, keep your eye on the weather! They’re based on Galileo Galilei’s invention, the thermoscope. The more spheres a thermometer has, the more accurate it will be. And this where the Galileo Thermometer comes in. As I type this, the label on my lowest floating bubble reads 24°C. Actually, all three principles play an equally important part in making it work. 99. Rather, the different colors of the floating bubbles make for easier identification and a more pleasant aesthetic. How Does a Galileo Thermometer Work? And that is how Galileo thermometer works. Now that you understand how this thermometer works, you may look at a Galileo Thermometer though a fresh pair of eyes the next time you see one. 3 4 5. Any changes in air temperature change the density of the liquid as well. Large 44cm tall Free standing Galileo thermometer in Gift packaging. As you have just seen, the density of an object compared to that of the liquid it is submerged in determines its buoyancy (ability to float). From the description earlier in this article, you already know what a Galileo Thermometer looks like and what it consists of. ​Although not being used for meteorological purposes anymore, it is easy to see why Galileo Thermometers are still so popular. This is a perfect choice currently available in the market at the cheapest price. Let's use the example of a piece of iron of a certain size. The thermometers we use today are different than those Galileo may have used. We already know they have the same volume (size), for example, 20 square centimeters (0.31 square inches). It is the numbered metal tags hanging below each bubble, that changes the "density" of each globe. Not all thermometers work this way, however. How Galileo thermometer work? Feel free to leave me any comments, questions or suggestions, and I will get back to you as soon as possible. What you may not realize is that each of the colored glass bubbles in the liquid is approximately the same density. This causes the bubbles inside the liquid to rise and fall in response to the changes in fluid density. Although the original inventor/s of the Galileo Thermometer is unknown, it is named after the legendary scientist due to his discovery that the density of a liquid responds to changes in temperature. Today, we are spoiled for choice when it comes to thermometers, from the trusty old mercury thermometer, bimetal, to modern-day digital sensors. The science behind the thermometer was discovered 400 years ago by Galileo. And it this very principle that makes a Galileo Thermometer works. You will immediately notice that you do not experience any "pushback" from the water while you submerge it. These metal tags are actually calibrated counterweights. Who Was Galileo? 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