Rain gauge

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A rain gauge (also known as a udometer or a pluviometer [Pluviograph ] or an ombrometer or a cup) is a type of instrument used by meteorologists and hydrologists to gather and measure the amount of liquid precipitation (solid precipitation is measured by a snow gauge) over a set period of time.

Contents

History

The first known records of rainfalls were kept by the Ancient Greeks about 500 B.C. This was followed 100 years later by people in India using bowls to record the rainfall. The readings from these were correlated against expected growth, and used as a basis for land taxes. In the Arthashastra, used for example in Magadha, precise standards were set as to grain production. Each of the state storehouses were equipped with a standardised rain gauge to classify land for taxation purposes.[1]

While some sources state that the much later cheugugi of Korea was the world's first gauge, other sources say that Jang Yeong-sil developed or refined an existing gauge.[2][3][4][5][6][7][8] In 1662, Christopher Wren created the first tipping-bucket rain gauge in Britain.[6]

Principles

Most rain gauges generally measure the precipitation in millimeters. The level of rainfall is sometimes reported as inches or centimeters.

Rain gauge amounts are read either manually or by AWS (Automatic Weather Station). The frequency of readings will depend on the requirements of the collection agency. Some countries will supplement the paid weather observer with a network of volunteers to obtain precipitation data (and other types of weather) for sparsely populated areas.

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