Science: Atmospheric Pressure

6 03 2010

We’re doing a science unit about air from Science, Science, Everywhere. We read about atmospheric pressure and learned a number of interesting facts. Did you know that there is about 2000 pounds of air pressing down on you right now? I didn’t. We read about what air is made of, how much earth’s atmosphere weighs (5.75 quadrillion tons!), how thick it is, and how temperature, humidity, and land elevation affect air pressure. We learned about pressure systems and their role in creating weather, what meteorology is, how both mercury and aneroid barometers work, and what different barometer readings mean. Then, we made a barometer of our own. Here it is:

Today’s reading is 7 cm. No idea whether that is high or low, but I guess we’ll figure it out as we take readings over time. Note the notepad for daily pressure readings. Also, that little dimple on the barometer top? Childcraft specified a latex balloon as the right piece of equipment to make the top of the barometer. But we didn’t have any balloons. After some pondering, mama realized she had a good substitute available. Ahem.




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