Lord Kelvin's atmospheric electricity measurements

@article{Aplin2013LordKA,
  title={Lord Kelvin's atmospheric electricity measurements},
  author={Karen Aplin and R. Giles Harrison},
  journal={History of Geo- and Space Sciences},
  year={2013},
  volume={4},
  pages={83-95}
}
Abstract. Lord Kelvin (William Thomson) made important contributions to the study of atmospheric electricity during a brief but productive period from 1859–1861. By 1859 Kelvin had recognised the need for "incessant recording" of atmospheric electrical parameters, and responded by inventing both the water dropper equaliser for measuring the atmospheric potential gradient (PG), and photographic data logging. The water dropper equaliser was widely adopted internationally and is still in use today… Expand

Figures and Tables from this paper

Fair weather atmospheric electricity : its origin and applications
Abstract—An entirely electrostatic view of the earth upper atmosphere system, as understood for example, by Lord Kelvin, underwent a paradigm shift around 1900 with definitive observations ofExpand
Atmospheric electric fields during the Carrington flare
Karen Aplin and Giles Harrison examine international records of the 1859 Carrington flare and consider what they mean for our understanding of space weather today. Space weather is increasinglyExpand
Fair weather criteria for atmospheric electricity measurements
The global atmospheric electric circuit, which links the space environment with terrestrial weather, has mostly been investigated using fair-weather surface atmospheric electricity measurements.Expand
Fair weather criteria for atmospheric electricity measurements
Abstract The global atmospheric electric circuit, which links the space environment with terrestrial weather, has mostly been investigated using fair-weather surface atmospheric electricityExpand
Electrical sensing of the dynamical structure
Turbulent and convective processes within the planetary boundary layer are responsible for the transport of moisture, momentum and particulate matter, but are also important in determining theExpand
Julius Elster and Hans Geitel – Dioscuri of physics and pioneer investigators in atmospheric electricity
Abstract. Julius Elster and Hans Geitel contributed to the physics at the turn of the 19–20th century in many ways. We first summarize the life of these exceptional scientists. Then – owing to theExpand
Electrical sensing of the dynamical structure of the planetary boundary layer
Turbulent and convective processes within the planetary boundary layer are responsible for the transport of moisture, momentum and particulate matter, but are also important in determining theExpand
Electrical sensing of the dynamical structure of the planetary boundary layer
Abstract Turbulent and convective processes within the planetary boundary layer are responsible for the transport of moisture, momentum and particulate matter, but are also important in determiningExpand
Fair weather electric field meter for atmospheric science platforms
Abstract A miniature field meter is described for measuring fair weather electric fields (of magnitude ~100 Vm-1). It is a brushless field mill constructed from machine-cut parts, driven by aExpand
Kelvin In The Twenty-first Century
Aspects of Kelvin’s work that are a subject of study today are outlined focusing on five topics: The Kelvin (foam) problem, Kelvin Waves and their role in the El Nino phenomenon, the application ofExpand
...
1
2
...

References

SHOWING 1-10 OF 50 REFERENCES
Smoke emissions from industrial western Scotland in 1859 inferred from Lord Kelvin’s atmospheric electricity measurements
Abstract Lord Kelvin (William Thomson) made careful, calibrated measurements of the atmospheric Potential Gradient (PG) at three sites on the east side of Arran in 1859. The PG was always anomalouslyExpand
Investigating Earth’s Atmospheric Electricity: a Role Model for Planetary Studies
The historical development of terrestrial atmospheric electricity is described, from its beginnings with the first observations of the potential gradient to the global electric circuit model proposedExpand
Atmospheric Electricity Potential Gradient at Kew Observatory, 1898 to 1912
In a previous paper, called E1 for brevity, I discussed the results obtained for the diurnal variation of the potential gradient of atmospheric electricity at Kew Observatory from 1898 to 1904. TheExpand
Mid-nineteenth century smoke concentrations near London
Abstract Measurements of atmospheric electricity began at Kew Observatory, London (51°28′N, 0°19′W) in 1843, with recording apparatus installed by Lord Kelvin in 1861. The measured electric potentialExpand
Atmospheric Electricity in High Latitudes
The recent work of Elster and Geitel, Ebert and others, has added three new factors to the data for the study of atmospheric electricity, namely:— The rate at which the permanent charge on theExpand
The evidence for auroral effects on atmospheric electricity
SummaryThe possibility of atmospheric electrical effects due to the aurora has been considered by investigators since 1875. An unsatisfactory theoretical basis for an explanation of observed effectsExpand
Nineteenth century Parisian smoke variations inferred from Eiffel Tower atmospheric electrical observations
Abstract Atmospheric electrical measurements provide proxy data from which historic smoke pollution levels can be determined. This approach is applied to infer autumnal Parisian smoke levels in theExpand
Measurements of Atmospheric Electricity Aloft
  • K. Nicoll
  • Environmental Science
  • Surveys in Geophysics
  • 2012
Measurements of the electrical characteristics of the atmosphere above the surface have been made for over 200 years, from a variety of different platforms, including kites, balloons, rockets andExpand
Initial effect of the Fukushima Accident on atmospheric electricity
[1] Vertical atmospheric DC electric field at ground level, or potential gradient (PG), suddenly dropped by one order of magnitude at Kakioka, 150 km southwest from the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclearExpand
Two daily smoke maxima in eighteenth century London air
Varied electrostatics experiments followed Benjamin Franklin's pioneering atmospheric investigations. In Knightsbridge, Central London, John Read (1726–1814) installed a sensing rod in the upper partExpand
...
1
2
3
4
5
...