1450,1481 Hygrometer

The book of science

Tom Sharp

Nicolaus de Cusa, Leonardo da Vinci atmospheric sciences Hygrometer


Hygrometer designs

Water witching

Scientists have created many ways to measure humidity. Here is an incomplete chronology assembled from the readings below (not original work):

  • 1450: Nicolaus de Cusa described the first hygrometer.
  • 1481: Leonardo da Vinci implemented de Cusa's idea.
  • 1625: Santorrio Santorre made a hygrometer by hanging a weight on the string of a lyre.
  • 1650: Ferdinand II, the Grand Duke of Tuscany, invented the condensation hygrometer.
  • 1664: Francesco Folli designed the first practical hygrometer, a paper-ribbon hygrometer.
  • 1687: Guillaume Amontons invented a hygrometer similar to a three-liquid barometer.
  • 1755: Johann Heinrich Lambert made a hygrometer, and in 1774 first coined the term “hygrometer.”
  • 1783: Horace Bénédict de Saussure invented the hair hygrometer.
  • 1799: John Leslie measured the humidity using a differential thermometer with a dry-bulb and a wet-bulb (a psychrometer).
  • Late 1700s: James Hutton invented the sling psychrometer.
  • 1815: Joseph Louis Gay-Lussac derived the formula for calculating humidity from readings of the dry- and wet-bulb thermometers.
  • 1818: Ernst August coined the name “psychrometer.”
  • 1820: John Frederic Daniell invented the dew-point hygrometer.
  • 1854: Henri Victor Regnault created a dew-point hygrometer using ether in a silver thimble.
  • 1887: Richard Assmann invented the aspirated (ventillated) psychrometer.
  • 1938: Dumore began research into developing the electric hygrometer.

See also in The book of science:

Readings in wikipedia:

Other readings: