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Acoustic weather station

  (+14, -1)(+14, -1)
(+14, -1)
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1. Hygrometer:

Players of stringed instruments always grumble that changes in humidity affect the tuning of their instruments - especially those with natural (gut) strings. So this weather station will have a set of strings, chosen for their differing abilities to react to humidity and a bow which will be drawn across them when you want to know the weather. The chord played will tell you the relative humidity.

2. Barometer:

Accompanying the "humidity chord" will be a set of percussive sound played on drums in which the tension of the skin comes from the internal air pressure of the drum rather than the tension to which the skin is tightened. Thus, the note played will depend on the relative difference between the internal and external air pressures - a lower note implying a higher external air pressure.

3. Anemometer:

Finally, wind speed will be communicated via a small windmill which, as it rotates, drags a thin strip of metal around a finely ridged pole, so that it produces a continuous drone, with a frequency proportional to the wind speed.
hippo, Jun 21 2009


       Given enough acoustic weather stations and enough time it would be possible to reproduce the complete works of Shakespeare, err, Beethoven.
4whom, Jun 21 2009

       How does it sense temperature ?
8th of 7, Jun 21 2009

       //How does it sense temperature //
Measure the speed of sound.

I remember one of my EE mates at college nearly 30 years ago did a final year project of a no-moving parts weather station - even the rain gauge depth was sensed by sonar.
AbsintheWithoutLeave, Jun 21 2009

       [8th...] Theremin-y ways to do that...
4whom, Jun 21 2009

       Ha. Excellent [4whom].   


       Even better than the old man weather station. Consisting of grouches with bad knees, the output is a chorus of groans and expletives.
ldischler, Jun 21 2009

       Both temperature and humidity change the string tension in an instrument, making it difficult to know what variable is changing.   

       [idischler], despite many studies, it has not been definitively proven that people with bad knees actually are able to feel the difference in weather. (The alternative explanation being that the knees just hurt randomly, and they remember the times when the weather is changing, just because something salient was happening. Like the pigeons in a box)
Smurfsahoy, Jun 22 2009

       [Smurfs] True. You'd have to either be content with a combined metric (so, if the pitch of the note rises, understand that's either getting dryer or hotter, or both), or investigate exotic materials which respond only to humidity or temerature, but not both. This latter approach might also throw up some materials which respond non-linearly to temperature or humidity, which would allow scope for producing more diverse harmonies.
hippo, Jun 22 2009

       One of my DIY electronics mags has a project for an acoustic anemometer. Four ultrasonic transducers at the cardinal points of the compass, and a microcontroller to emit bleeps and measure the travel times. Simple.
BunsenHoneydew, Jun 23 2009


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