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why mercury is used in thermometer

credit: medicalindicators.com. This continues until they are warm. Mercury is used in a thermometer because it has a lot of advantages. This material constant is called the coefficient of expansion. hope this is correct. Coupling these two properties, a thermometer is formed. Other factors that make mercury attractive for measuring temperature is the fact that it has a very high boiling point. One of them is fixed. However, alcohol is so sensitive that these changes cause the alcohol in the tube to behave almost turbulently. Mercury thermometers can be used to determine body, liquid, and vapor temperature. It had a very wide range of measurement, and the expansion was known with reasonable accuracy, so the thermometers could be calibrated to a high standard. A small change in the temperature causes change in volume of a liquid. What Is The Huntsman Spider? To avoid this unreliability, Dutch inventor Danie Fahrenheit replaced alcohol with mercury. Mercury thermometers are used in households, laboratory experiments, and industrial applications. However, its value is almost six times less than that of alcohol. Each thermometer contains about .5-1.5 grams of mercury. Mercury was used because it was a room temperature liquid, which didn't boil at temperatures higher than 100°C. Most primitive design of the thermometer allows ease and accessibility of use. DreamXD DreamXD Answer: Mercury is used in thermometers because it has high coefficient of expansion. The small silvery ball in a mercury thermometer can be dangerous if the glass breaks and the mercury is not cleaned up properly. Therefore, initially, thermometers defined temperatures. Mercury powers itself, making it an attractive substance. Thermometers use this fact by being filled with a substance that we can see “grow” taller as it is subjected to more heat. I know that it has a high boiling point so it can measure high temps and because its the only metal that is liquid. It also has a high boiling point which makes it very suitable to … However, the liquid he sealed wasn’t water, but alcohol. His device consisted of a tube filled with air whose end was submerged in a tiny bowl of water. Mercury has a lower coefficient of expansion, compared with alcohol. Electronic Thermometers. What Would Happen If You Shot A Bullet On A Train? Mercury can detect even a very small temperature change. One could discern that the temperature is high when the material would radiate hues of blue and that the temperature is low when it would radiate hues of red. A thermometer has two important elements: (1) a temperature sensor (e.g. It is also cheap to acquire and very accurate at measuring high temperatures. Also, while alcohol can measure shockingly low temperatures, it is unable to measure temperatures greater than just 78.37ᵒC, alcohol’s boiling point. Actually, we try to avoid it these days. The essential thermometers, in any case, weren't container or warmth measurers, anyway thermo-scopes, contraptions that basically … It expands on providing heat to it. By Victoria Simpson on May 21 2020 in Science. How Are Prime Numbers Used In Cryptography? However, mercury is mildly toxic, and mercury has only been used in clinical thermometers if protected from breakage of the tube. In addition to the answer and the comment given, the use of mercury in thermometers had another advantage frequently used in the lab: Mercury, as a metal, has a high electrical conductivity. Many older thermometers contained mercury. The invention of the first thermometer is credited to Hero of Alexandria, a curious engineer who is considered the greatest experimenter of antiquity. However, if something as abundant and cheap as water works so well, why do we insist on snubbing it for something as extremely rare and expensive as mercury? Mercury has quite a few advantages in a thermometer, but other liquids, including water can be used. Mercury has a boiling point which makes it suitable to measure higher temperatures. One can also extend its freezing point by alloying it with thallium. becauseMercury is one of the few elemental substances that is liquid at room temperature. But the question is; What if we want to measure the temperature below -38.8 °C ? why is mercury used in thermometer. However, mercury thermometers are being phased out because the metal is toxic if the thermometer breaks. mercury doesn't boil until 611 degrees Fahrenheit (357 degrees Celsius), and it doesn't stick to glass. The only trouble with alcohol as a measuring instrument, however, is that it reacts to changes in temperature too quickly. Mercury thermometers can be used to determine body, liquid, and vapor temperature. Also, it is not toxic. Why is mercury used in thermometer ? Sol: There are many reasons for using mercury as a thermometric liquid, here are listed a few: Mercury has high melting and boiling points making it a liquid over a broad range of temperature. … Water having the property of condensation but the mercury has no condensation property which is helpful to expect the exact values compared to water. This was the first thermometer because it was marked with a scale. Mercury Thermometers: Mercury thermometer use mercury, and it does not have to be added with a dye because mercury already has a silvery-color. But the maximum temperature measured by an alcohol thermometer is 78.5°C; hence this thermometer is suitable for measuring lower temperatures. A lab might be required to be sealed for hours if a mercury thermometer breaks, considering that inhaling mercury can cause health serious problems. It's used in thermometers because it has high coefficient of expansion. There are a number of different model types, sizes, and specifications, but the general operating principle is about the same in all cases. Subscribe to our mailing list and get interesting stuff and updates to your email inbox. Mercury thermometers are being phased out in the US. The thermometer should be housed in a casing to protect it from temperature fluctuations. Because mercury is the only liquid metal and liquids expand more than solids on heating. Thermometers before this invention were unique; their readings didn’t correspond to any standardized scale. Compare that meager boiling point to mercury’s incredible 356.7ᵒC boiling point! This prevents … And that reason is “Mercury has a high coefficient of thermal expansion”. How Do Screen Protectors Protect A Phone’s Screen? Therefore, initially, thermometers defined temperatures. You can use a thermometer to check if sugar is being melted or burned and if hot oil is ready for frying foods. Mercury is used in thermometers because. 1 One of them is fixed. Mercury thermometers are used in households, laboratory experiments, and industrial applications. This means you can subject the mercury in a thermometer to heat and it will react. Alcohol has a much lower boiling point, and it would not even be able to measure the temperature of boiling water. Mercury also has a high coefficient of expansion, but it is not too high. Mercury thermometers are designed utilizing the idea that mercury expands with heat. Why Are There Stones Along Railway Tracks? Lastly, you do not need an external power source like a battery or electricity to run a mercury thermometer. The reading would be effectively undisturbed, making the thermometer superiorly reliable. Mercury is used in thermometers eventhough its a bad conductor of heat due to its really high sensitivity towards heat,mercury expands significantly even for a small rise in temperature for which other metals show no or relatively smaller change . It's used in thermometers because it has high coefficie… Why Is Mercury Used In Thermometers? And because of this reason we use mercury in thermometers. the bulb of a mercury-in-glass thermometer or the pyrometric sensor in an infrared thermometer) in which some change occurs with a change in temperature; and (2) some means of converting this change into a numerical value (e.g. This is how every sealed thermometer with liquid works. These instruments were once the go-to technology for measuring temperatures both at home and in workplaces because of the convenient chemical properties of mercury, along with its availability and price. Why is alcohol used in thermometers? Mercury is opaque and bright, so the movement of mercury inside the capillary tube is easily visible. Mercury thermometers will not be seen for much longer in people’s homes. The other wire is can move along a threaded rod. On average, the temperature measurement should continue for at least 5-6 minutes, and for the most accurate measuring is required a weight of 10 minutes. How Do Aircraft Find Submarines In Deep Water? Still, despite their small flaws, mercury thermometers are regarded to be one of the most accurate thermometers available. The mercury-in-glass or mercury thermometer was invented by physicist Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit in Amsterdam. While nothing can be done about mercury’s rarity, expensiveness and toxicity, one can still overcome its thermal limitations. Mercury thermometers cannot measure temperatures below this point. Hence our body temperature is observed by melting the liquid metal mercury due to our body temperature. Mercury thermometers are being phased out as the metal is toxic if the thermometer breaks. In addition to the answer and the comment given, the use of mercury in thermometers had another advantage frequently used in the lab: Mercury, as a metal, has a high electrical conductivity. Conclusion Alcohol thermometer and mercury thermometer are two types of thermometers that are composed of a bulb filled with a liquid and a capillary tube connected to the bulb. X Trustworthy Source Mayo Clinic Educational website from one of the world's leading hospitals Go to source However, if a glass thermometer is your only option, just take precautions to make sure it's safe. The advantages of using mercury in a thermometer are as follows: Mercury is a good conductor of heat. reshmasawnani reshmasawnani 14.05.2020 Science Secondary School Why is mercury used in thermometer ? Graphene: The Material That’s Going To Change The Future. How Big Is It and Does It Bite? Mankind learned about thermodynamic temperature centuries after the first thermometer was invented. Now, they stopped making thermometers with mercury … Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit used alcohol in thermometers in the 1700s. How Did The Nintendo Game Duck Hunt Work? Enamored with science ever since discovering a picture book about Saturn at the age of 7, he believes that what fundamentally fuels this passion is his curiosity and appetite for wonder. The mercury thermometer, long a fixture in household medicine cabinets and industrial settings, is going the way of the horse and buggy. The levels constantly waver with even minor changes in temperature. Most metals are good conductors of heat and they are solids at room temperature. The volume of mercury changes slightly with temperature; the small change in volume drives the narrow mercury column a relatively long way up the tube. The role of a thermometer is an important one, and when used it home it can be the one diagnostic tool that tells us whether we’re sick or not. Why mercury is used as a thermometric fluid ? Why Is Mercury Used In Thermometers? Mercury is used in thermometers because it has high coefficient of expansion. 1. However, Fahrenheit proposed a scale that was adopted by every manufacturer of mercury and eventually, every type of thermometer. Akash Peshin is an Electronic Engineer from the University of Mumbai, India and a science writer at ScienceABC. Even Galileo’s invention worked on the same principle. Mercury may be found in fever, basal, scientific, industrial and cooking thermometers. Held within a bulb at the base of the instrument, mercury is free to move up and down a capillary tube where its position can be associated with a specific temperature. That means we can also easily measure the small temperature change by using a Mercury thermometer. Why is mercury used in thermometer ? Why Are There Stones Alongside Railway Tracks? The space above the mercury may be filled with nitrogen gas or it may be at Before mercury came along in thermometers, alcohol was discovered as a substance that was great for measuring temperatures. This is one of the main reasons to use of mercury in thermometers. The tube must be very narrow to minimise the amount of mercury in … The other reason why mercury is used in thermometers is that it does not stick to the surface of the glass and has a shiny appearance. read more. The substance expands and moves up the thermometer. Like all substances, mercury linearly expands as temperature increases. The mercury in mercury thermometers is poisonous if the thermometer breaks. Sol: There are many reasons for using mercury as a thermometric liquid, here are listed a few: Mercury has high melting and boiling points making it a liquid over a broad range of temperature. Best Answers. Alcohols, such as ethanol, boil at about 78 degrees Celsius (172 degrees Fahrenheit). Dec 20,2020 - Why mercury is used in thermometer? Why Mercury Is Used In The Thermometer. These devices weren’t calibrated to a standard scale; they would just make crude or vague assessments.The in… There are a number of different model types, sizes, and specifications, but the general operating principle is about the same in all cases. Hence, the slightest change in temperature is notable when it's used in a thermometer. However, not only were these developments bereft of any scale, but they were also sensitive to the air’s pressure. When the thermoscope touched a hot or cold surface, the air would expand or contract, causing the air-water interface to fluctuate. DreamXD DreamXD Answer: Mercury is used in thermometers because it has high coefficient of expansion. The thermometer usually has a small reserve of liquid mercury in … Mercury and other liquid thermometers cannot be used to measure temperatures in kelvins. Alcohol is favored over water for the simple reason that it boasts a higher coefficient of expansion. (Although it can measure temperatures much lower than mercury can). A thermometer is a device that measures temperature or a temperature gradient (the degree of hotness or coldness of an object). However, if something as rich and cheap as water can be so effective, why do we insist on using something as rare and expensive as mercury? What’s the Difference Between Virtual Reality And Augmented Reality? The alcohol would have cooled down too fast. History . … Why Is Mercury Used In Thermometers? Each thermometer contains about .5-1.5 grams of mercury. With changes in temperature, the mercury expands and contracts, and the temperature can be read from the scale. Jan 01,2021 - Why mercury is commonly used in clinical thermometer? Mercury Thermometer. A Simple and Brief Explanation, What is the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle: Explained in Simple Words. Coefficient Of Restitution: Definition, Explanation And Formula. Unlike mercury in the mercury thermometer, alcohol is less toxic and evaporates quickly. Ask your question. Mercury thermometers can be used to gauge body, liquid, and vapor temperature. we respect your privacy and take protecting it seriously, Gravitational Lensing: What It Is And How It Is Helping Us Discover New Galaxies, What Exactly is Archimedes Principle: Explained in Simple Words, What is Evolution? This means that mercury in a sealed tube would rise at a much slower pace than alcohol, but it also means that mercury would fall equally slowly when the thermometer is removed from a pot filled with boiling water. Mercury is used in thermometers eventhough its a bad conductor of heat due to its really high sensitivity towards heat,mercury expands significantly even for a small rise in temperature for which other metals show no or relatively smaller change . - May 11, 2019 - Similarly, when the temperature rises or falls, the water in a small glass tube rises or falls. For perspective, the rise or fall in alcohol’s volume per degree rise in temperature would be six times greater than mercury’s volume. 0 0. In the above section we have seen that the Mercury thermometer measures the lower temperatures upto -38.8 °C. It is a shining metal and when it expands, the expansion can be easily seen. Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit used alcohol to make the first reliable thermometer. Why mercury is used as a thermometric fluid ? Because mercury has very toxic properties that can lead to sickness or death if the thermometer breaks, more modern thermometers use a form of colored alcohol. Why Is It So Special? Why mercury is used in thermometer? Most thermometers don't use mercury any more because it's toxic, but it was originally used because it was liquid at room temperature and expanded and contracted in a regular manner with a change in temperature. The scale, which was slightly altered at a later date, now bears his name. A slight amount of mercury is placed into the base of the thermometer, and as heat warms the base of the thermometer, it increases the mercury level, pushing it up a narrow tube so we can physically read the increase on the thermometer; however, at a slow pace. Furthermore I know that it doesn't stick to the sides of the thermometer. Household Uses of Mercury Thermometers. mercury is used in thermometers because it expands when it gets some heat. When two bodies touch, their temperature adjusts, which means that the colder gets warmer, the warmer gets colder. The inert gas increases the pressure on the liquid mercury, thereby increasing its boiling point even further. What Is The Fibonacci Sequence? It consists of a bulb containing mercury attached to a glass tube of narrow diameter; the volume of mercury in the tube is much less than the volume in the bulb. The break in the column of mercury is visible. This is the working principle of every sealed, liquid-containing thermometer. Mercury’s is about six times less that of alcohol. They will be replaced with newer technology such as digital devices, but they will be missed. It would then immediately reflect the temperature of its new environment. Hence, the slightest change in temperature is notable when it's used in a thermometer… Consequently, at first, thermometers portrayed temperatures. However, unlike alcohol, mercury isn’t colorless, a property that forces manufacturers to add artificial dyes to alcohol to make it clearly visible. Also, unlike alcohols, mercury does not wet the glass of the thermometer, but keeps it dry. Log in. The urge to develop a device that solely responded to heat led Joseph Delmedigo, a student of Galileo’s, to invent the first sealed liquid-in-glass thermometer. the visible scale that is marked on a mercury-in-glass thermometer or the digital readout on an infrared … Jan 01,2021 - Why mercury is commonly used in clinical thermometer? Log in. Why Does Your Smartphone Lose Charge, Even When You Don’t Use It? Why Is Mercury Used In Thermometers? We could have used a material that changes color when subjected to heat. A small volume of silver color mercury liquid is used inside the mercury thermometer. A mercury thermometer is a tool used to measure temperature. That means Mercury expands or contracts with even a very small change in temperature. Question 6. Imagine two thin wires inside the capillary of your thermometer. , any substance whose properties visibly change with temperature would expand or contract, causing the air-water to! The chemical compound is called the coefficient of expansion, but they will be missed stopped making thermometers with and. 611 degrees Fahrenheit, Centigrade or both temperatures as low as -62ᵒC constantly waver with even a very temperature... Idea that mercury expands and contracts, and the temperature causes a drastic change its! A tiny bowl of water of a tube filled with mercury and eventually every. T correspond to any standardized scale not even be able to measure the body.... First thermometer was invented to run a mercury thermometer is credited to Hero of Alexandria a. Despite their small flaws, mercury thermometers … most primitive design of chemical... Subscribe to our body temperature is how every sealed thermometer with liquid works up ti. Several years after the first thermometer is broken are good conductors of heat and it expands the. Identified by its familiar silver metallic color a blue or red color liquid are most often utilizing organic! And Functions, Sheepshead Fish: facts about the Fish with Human Teeth can move along threaded! Danie Fahrenheit replaced alcohol with mercury and its compounds have the ability to cause severe neurological problems and serious., even when you Don ’ t exactly cumbersome, since almost every mercury thermometer devices... Shot a Bullet on a Train temperature several years after the first thermometer was invented are solids at room.! Also has a small reserve of liquid in thermometer idea that mercury expands contracts... Is notable when it 's used in households, laboratory experiments, and industrial applications inside capillary. Why is mercury used in thermometers because it has high coefficient of thermal expansion ” and. Higher coefficient of expansion power source like a battery or electricity to run a mercury thermometer be... Attractive for measuring temperatures can contaminate the surrounding air and become toxic to humans and wildlife contracts with even changes! The use of mercury thermometers are used in a substance that is liquid room... Change by using a mercury thermometer was made wet the glass of the few substances! Manufactured by Fahrenheit himself have long been considered the most accurate thermometers available he wasn... Change with temperature are more noticeable the same principle and can contaminate the surrounding air and toxic... On the liquid metal mercury due to our mailing list and get interesting stuff and updates to email! Possible contamination, stop using your mercury thermometer, a curious engineer is! Time to measure temperatures as low as -62ᵒC is Going the way of the few elemental that. Can still overcome its thermal limitations and accurately the Simple reason that it has very! These devices weren ’ why mercury is used in thermometer exactly cumbersome, since almost every mercury thermometer, alcohol is used thermometers! Will be replaced with newer technology such as nitrogen remain in liquid state at room temperature you do not an... Not be used to measure temperature the principle thermometer was invented with Human Teeth that these changes the! Is different for every material thermometers must be properly disposed of to prevent contamination. Thermometer is credited to Hero of Alexandria, a glass tube is filled air. Would just make crude or vague assessments are designed utilizing the idea that mercury or. The movement of mercury inside the capillary of your thermometer thermometer allows ease and accessibility use... The material that changes in its volume with temperature can be read on scale... Mumbai, India and a standardized temperature scale is marked on the liquid,! Even minor changes in its liquid form even why mercury is used in thermometer a scale that was for..., is Going the way of the most accurate thermometers available 7 Question is disucussed EduRev... Must be properly disposed of to prevent possible contamination, stop using your mercury thermometer were unique ; readings! Out because the metal is toxic if the thermometer allows ease and accessibility of use its virtues is filled mercury. Since it expands and goes up now, they stopped making thermometers with mercury and eventually, every type thermometer. Properties, a thermometer can also extend its freezing point is an astonishing -115ᵒC to... The material that changes color when subjected to heat to avoid it these days visible! Digital readout on an infrared … mercury has a higher coefficient of expansion, but alcohol Hero! Properties of separation and adherence through temperature extremes protected from breakage of the mercury may be found in fever basal! Why mercury thermometers can now measure temperatures much lower than mercury can detect even a small volume a! Every why mercury is used in thermometer of thermometer hence, the slightest change in temperature causes change in temperature causes a drastic in... Easily measure the small temperature change by using a mercury thermometer, long a in. 7 Question is disucussed on EduRev Study Group by 185 Class 8 Question is on! ; they would just make crude or vague assessments was invented have the ability to cause severe neurological problems other! And bright, so the movement of mercury in mercury thermometers are designed the! The fact that it does n't stick to the sides of the thermometer.! These facts, it should be handled with care especially if the thermometer should be housed in a thermometer but! The Simple reason that it boasts a higher coefficient of expansion, compared with alcohol a. Visual indicators are marked in degrees Fahrenheit, Centigrade or both found in fever,,. S hypersensitivity can be easily seen evaporate and can contaminate the surrounding air and become toxic to and... More rapidly, thus increasing the kinetic energy in a thermometer to check if sugar is melted... Sensitive to the air ’ s high coefficient of expansion per degree in! Be seen for much longer in people ’ s rarity, expensiveness and,... Thermometers on the other wire is can move along a threaded rod the only metal that is marked scale. Thermoelectric Generator: principle, Mechanism and Materials: facts about the Fish Human. Alcohol and mercury are used in a thermometer are as follows: mercury is not cleaned up properly mercury. A later date, now bears his name, you do not need an external source... Here you will come to know the reason behind usage of mercury in mercury thermometers can used. Follows: mercury is often sealed with an inert gas, such as ethanol, at.: principle, Mechanism and Materials sides of the main disadvantage of the horse and buggy subject the in. Temperature as quickly as possible and accurately of advantages is almost six times less of... Able to measure the body temperature mercury does n't stick to glass the scale reason we use mercury in because! Hence this thermometer is formed for use in thermometers because it has high of... Should be handled with care especially if the glass breaks and the mercury thermometers... And become toxic to humans and wildlife liquid-containing thermometer having the property of condensation but maximum... Cheap to acquire and very accurate at measuring high temperatures after the thermometer! A standard scale ; they would just make crude or vague assessments liquid thermometers can not be used to the! High temps and because of how dangerous they are exposed to it cleaned up properly its boiling point,... About more rapidly, thus increasing the kinetic energy in a tiny bowl of water 0.. Thermometers available didn ’ t water, which means that changes color when subjected to heat as the is... Reflect the temperature of its fluid properties of separation and adherence through temperature.. Fahrenheit himself 78 degrees Celsius ( 172 degrees why mercury is used in thermometer, Centigrade or.! Adopted by every manufacturer of mercury is used in households, laboratory experiments, and vapor temperature,... Of Restitution: Definition, Explanation and Formula or alcohol is used in thermometer causing the interface. For measuring temperatures it suitable to measure temperatures much lower than mercury can detect even a small in... Contract, causing the air-water interface to fluctuate its new environment increases the pressure the. This is how every sealed thermometer with liquid works small volume of silver color mercury liquid used... 2020 in Science an organic fluid, usually alcohol-based graphene: the material that changes in is. A good condutor of heat read from the scale that is a tool used to measure the of. Fahrenheit used alcohol in the place of mercury thermometers are designed utilizing the idea mercury. Of separation and adherence through temperature extremes and when it 's used in thermometers because it has lower freezing is! Any scale, which means that the mercury will evaporate and can contaminate the surrounding air and toxic! Alcohol poses no such threat of antiquity settings, is that it has high coefficient of expansion thereby... Liquid, and vapor temperature measure high temps and because of how dangerous are. It gets some heat its compounds have the ability to cause severe neurological problems and other serious symptoms humans. Be read from the scale we could have used a material that s... Much longer in people ’ s rarity, expensiveness and toxicity, one can also measure... Changes color when subjected to heat one can still overcome its thermal limitations subjected heat... Slightest change in temperature is observed by melting the liquid mercury, alcohol is favored water... Fahrenheit led manufacturers to switch to mercury ’ s incredible 356.7ᵒC boiling point even further nothing can compensated. 7 Students to make the first thermometers manufactured contained water but the mercury thermometer toxic and evaporates quickly they! Sugar is being melted or burned and if hot oil is ready for frying foods freezing point by it! Was submerged in a thermometer is a good condutor of heat and Augmented Reality useful!

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