What Is A Rain Gauge?



You surely have been too curious why some of your neighbors have that cylindrical-looking object mounted either on their rooftops of in the middle of their yards. When it rains, that object somehow collects the rainwater. You see that your neighbors measure and record the data after a certain span of time. Well, that must be the rain gauge!

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As the term implies, the rain gauge is an instrument which aids in the collection of rainfall or precipitation data. It tells you how much rain you get over a period of time, say, for the entire year. Take note that this is a wonderful addition to your home especially if you want to compare the amount of rain that you get in your backyard as compared to your friend’s or cousin’s who live in another state or country. If this is your purpose, setting up the same instrument in your lawn will really give you the know-how.

Its Main Function

Literally, the rain gauge is the device that is used by the professional weathermen, hydrologists and meteorologists; because it tells them how much rain a particular place gets at a specific period of time. Simply put, the device gauges the sum or level of liquid precipitation that falls in a certain location. Through the derived data, the weather stations are able to forecast how much rain the previous storm has brought over the last two days or so.

The Unit of Measurement

For the severe rains or storms, the amount of rainfall is often reported following the centimeters or inches units of measurement. This somehow depends on where you exactly live. However, under normal circumstances, the typical rain gauges measure the level of precipitation in millimeters.

Its Limitations

The device also has its own limitations. Say for example, there is a hurricane or a crazy storm, then, certainly the accuracy of the data may fall short.

At any rate, the rain gauges should not be misconstrued to provide the pertinent information about the rainfall for the entire state or country. Remember that the device is supposed to be set up in a definite place. Thus, the weather stations get to report the totality of the rainwater that falls only in the place where they have grounded a rain gauge. The weathermen may put the device in a spot in the city which receives the most rainfall during the rainy days or in a place which gets the least amount of precipitation for the whole year round.

Other obvious factors that may hinder the accuracy of the data include the sleet or the freezing rain as well as the combination of the rain and snow. If any minute drop of rainwater freezes, then, most probably it will cause an inaccuracy in terms of the readings.

Purchasing Your Own Device

If you are up and about to find out how much rainfall you get in your own backyard, a rain gauge of your own will come in handy. You may not be really engrossed in studying the weather phenomenon but you simply want to feed your curiosity. By all means, purchasing the device will be of great help to you.

Even when you don’t work for any weather station, you can buy it from the market. There are various types so be sure that you do your own research about what kind of rain gauge you want to have in your backyard.







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