The Challenge: Make a Thermometer
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What type of thermometer
did the scientists make on the island?
The scientists actually
made two thermometers. Firstly, a glass thermometer was constructed using
methanol as the liquid. A very thin tube was made by heating glass in
a furnace and then carefully stretching the molten glass. In order to
calibrate the thermometer, we needed several known temperatures such as
ice (0oC/32oF) or boiling water (100oC/212oF). We couldn't
use either: there was a distinct lack of ice on our Caribbean island and
methanol boils at 67oC (153oF) so would have completely evaporated
by the time the water reached 100oC. Instead we used sea water
(which we guessed to be around 24oC/75oF) and room temperature (which
we thought to be around 30oC/86oF in the lime factory).
The Rough Science resistance thermometer