Hygrometer: Price, characteristics, use …

November 2, 2021

The hygrometer is a necessary instrument when there is a lot of humidity in the home or office . It should also be present if you notice a dry throat from the heating or if you notice drops of water on the inside of the windows.

Also known as a hydrographer, this tool came from the mind of the renowned French physicist Guillaume Amontons . This commendable scientist contributed a breakthrough not only to meteorology but also to different fields of thermometry.

This interesting laboratory instrument was exhibited for the first time in 1687 at the Academy of Sciences . After presenting the hygrometer, he continued his research and made a series of interesting publications on fiction and thermometry.

Some time later, models made by other physicists began to be seen, who made certain additions to perfect it. One of these was created in the 18th century by the German Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit, who was also the inventor of the mercury thermometer.

What is the hygrometer?

The hygrometer is a tool whose function is to qualitatively measure the humidity present in the atmospheric air , in the soil or in the plants. This is achieved thanks to its sensors that show the variation that can occur in the degrees of humidity.

Hygrometer values ​​are expressed in percentages , ranging from 0% to 100%. Regarding the amount of relative humidity, this shows the ration of water in the gaseous state or water vapor in the air, with respect to the amount of water that could saturate it at a specific temperature.

The first hydrographs were made with mechanical sensors. These responded to elements such as human hair, which is highly sensitive to variations in humidity. Thanks to this, this tool became an indispensable element in meteorology , where it is implemented to know the humidity of the air. In addition, these are also often seen in humidifiers or other air handling equipment.

The hygrometer provides this information because it is made up of a wet and a dry lump, known as a psychrometer. This is designed with materials that can expand or contract depending on the level of humidity present in the environment. At the same time, this measurement is accompanied by others such as pressure and temperature.

Where is it used?

This instrument has the quality of being able to be used in multiple places and situations. Usually it is used to know how close the rainy season is. It is also often used for the preservation of products with high sensitivity to humidity . There are different industrial processes where a little humidity is necessary, for example, for the manufacture of paper, silk and other fabrics.

On the other hand, its use is common in places where a high level of hygiene is sought. Also to know how much humidity there is in an office, room or premises. Nowadays it is also frequently seen in saunas, museums, egg incubators and even, for the conservation of musical instruments made of wood. Likewise, its use has been extended to the paint industry, since there are coatings with high sensitivity to humidity.

In the field of meteorology, the hygrometer is used to calculate the level of humidity present in the atmosphere. Thanks to this instrument it is possible to know if there is much or little humidity in the environment.

How does it work?

The hygrometer works by measuring the humidity in a specific space. For this, this instrument is based on the use of absorbent materials, which, when impregnated with environmental humidity, lengthen. In spaces with a more humid air they tend to lengthen much more .

The procedure to measure humidity in any area, you only need to hold the hygrometer in the space to be analyzed , then wait a few minutes for the team to make the calculations and return the expected values.

This works because it has lithium chloride . This, when mixed with water, expands by absorbing moisture. For its part, in electronic equipment, the entire assembly is heated by means of electrically conductive electrodes, this produces the evaporation of water and gives rise to the absorption of chloride, expanding and modifying its volume.

There are models of hygrometers where you can see the measurement obtained in degrees Celsius or Fahrenheit , along with the humidity of the bulb and the dew point. Electronically powered equipment has the ability to measure humidity using materials that have electrical resistance. The value of this will change according to the level of moisture it absorbs.

For what do you use it?

Humidity is an element of relevance for our comfort and health. This is related to irritability, lethargy, drowsiness, and depreciation of observation activities. However, it also has a strong influence on heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

It is at this point where the hygrometer becomes an instrument with a variety of uses that, in addition to being used in the field of meteorology, can also be used to:

  • Biomedical applications.
  • Industrial spaces.
  • Treatments for respiratory diseases.
  • Agricultural research.
  • Physiotherapeutic treatments.
  • Preserving the is good condition of works of art in museums.

It is important to know that when the humidity level is low, specifically, below 30%, it can be harmful to health . Likewise, it generates an increase in static energy, irritations, annoyances and a potential increase in the amount of dust in the air.

On the other hand, when these values ​​exceed 70%, the alert signal should also light up . When the humidity exceeds these levels, mold begins to appear, the growth of microbes increases and they condense in cold areas. Using a hygrometer avoid falling at either extreme. Thanks to this instrument it is possible to determine the quality of the air in the environment and to know what measures to take to improve a specific space.

Types of hygrometer

The hygrometer is characterized by its high precision and its incredible response time. You can determine values ​​of up to 0% when the environment is totally dry, up to 100% in spaces with extreme humidity conditions, such as steam rooms. To perform these measurements it is possible to use some of the following types of hygrometers:

Hair hygrometer

This model is very unique since it contains a set of hair in the form of a cord. The intention of this is to find the diversity of the changes in humidity in the air . Whether it is rolled up or unrolled with greater or lesser force according to the humidity present in the environment.

Absorption hygrometer

This device has the ability to work with chemistry, using various gaseous substances that have the ability to absorb or separate the moisture present in the atmosphere.

Electric hygrometer

This is manufactured from two spiral-wound electrodes. It works in principle with inorganic substances that allow it to separate the water and transform it from the liquid to the gaseous state, taking care of the proportion of moisture in the scattered molecules.

Condensing hygrometer

When it is necessary to estimate the humidity level in a very wide range, this type of hygrometer is used. It is generally used on flat surfaces such as smooth walls or floors .

Digital hygrometer

This hygrometer carries out the calculations by means of electronic circuits with which it is sought to express through numbers the voltage alterations caused by the variation of some physical properties. These measurements can be seen on the screen. It is important to note that this is the most current hygrometer.

We can understand that the hygrometer is an essential tool, with several variations that allow it to be useful beyond the field of meteorology. This instrument can be present in the daily life of any person, in the home, laboratory or office. It is extremely important to be aware of the humidity level around us, and there is no better way to find out than by using a hygrometer.

Hygrometer Features

The first hygrometers manufactured consisted of a U-shaped tube that usually contained sulfuric acid. Condensation hygrometers work by transforming humidity in water , using the decrease in temperature with the help of sulfuric ether.

Although today we find a wide range of hygrometers, they all have a series of similar characteristics:

  • Electricity control
  • Temperature chamber
  • Mirror
  • Photo-transistor
  • Double references
  • Light source
  • Refrigerator

These characteristics are complemented by the specific characteristics of each type of hygrometer. However, the role of each is to provide accurate results.

Importance of the Hygrometer

The use of the hygrometer in open and closed spaces is very important. In addition, this is an indicator of the progress achieved by humans in the study of climatic phenomena, recognizing their changes during the seasons of the year.

As we have appreciated, there are many applications of this tool. It is very useful to preserve products that are usually affected by humidity, it indicates the proximity of rains and storms, it determines the degree of humidity in offices and premises. Similarly, it shows what environmental conditions are necessary to carry out various industrial processes.

The hygrometer is an instrument that must be calibrated at least once a year . This action guarantees its correct operation and the obtaining of precise and reliable results.

Dr. Loony Davis5
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Born and raised in Brussels in an English family, I have always lived in a multicultural environment. After several work experiences in marketing and communication, I came to Smart Water Magazine, which I describe as the most exciting challenge of my career.
I am a person with great restlessness and curiosity to learn, discover what I do not know, as well as reinvent myself daily, someone who is curious about life and wants to know. I enjoy sharing knowledge.
This is my personal project but I also collaborate in other blogs, it is the case, the most important web on water currently exists in the US, if you are interested you can read my articles here.

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