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Solar Radiometers Shop

Solar radiometers are also known as light mills because light moves their blades as opposed to wind for windmills. They consist of an airtight bulb containing a partial vacuum. Inside the glass bulb is a fine vertical spindle with a set of vanes mounted at the top. When the glass bulb is exposed to light, the weather vanes are propelled around, the speed of propulsion increases with the intensity of light, providing a qualitative way of measuring electronmagnetic radiation. These days the Solar radiometer, or Crooke's radiometer (named after Sir William Crooke who invented them), is more of a beautiful science gizmo than a means of accurate measurement. Our Solar Radiometer shop stocks a range of exquisite radiometers which make unusual and interesting gifts for scientists and science enthusiasts. For a great explanation of how radiometers work, check out the video.
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  1. Radiometer with Hummingbird

    Radiometer with Hummingbird

    This Solar Radiometer has a clear glass globe, and features a beautiful coloured glass hummingbird in the stem. The Solar Radiometer is made by traditional Thuringian hand-blowing in Germany, from Lauschaer bottle glass. The Crookes radiometer was invented by the chemist Sir William Crookes as the by-product of some chemical research. In the course of very accurate quantitative chemical work, he was weighing samples in a partially evacuated chamber to reduce the effect of air currents, and noticed the weighings were disturbed when sunlight shone on the balance. Investigating this effect, he devised the device named after him, still manufactured and sold to this day as a curiosity item. This version is both a scientific curiousity and a beautiful ornament. Learn More
  2. Solar Radiometer - Clear Globe on a Clear Venetian Stem

    Solar Radiometer - Clear Globe on a Clear Venetian Stem

    This Solar Radiometer on a venetian stem features innovative design. The globe is made of clear Lauschaer crystal glass. In the glass globe is a 4-vane drive assembly, which turns under the influence of light. One side of each vane is black, the other is silver. The clear glass stem and foot are made by Lauschaer ribbed glass. Learn More
  3. Solar Radiometer on a Blue braided Stem Sphere Clear (80mm)

    Solar Radiometer on a Blue braided Stem Sphere Clear (80mm)

    This Solar Radiometer on a braided stem features innovative design. The globe is made of crystal clear Lauschaer crystal glass. In the glass globe is a 4-vane drive assembly, which turns under the influence of light. One side of each vane is black, the other is silver. The glass stem was woven from clear and blue coloured glass filaments. Height: ca. 24. 5cm. (9. 6 in) Globe diameter: ca. 8cm. (3. 25 in) The Crookes radiometer, also known as the light mill or solar engine, consists of an airtight glass bulb, containing a partial vacuum. Inside are a set of vanes which are mounted on a spindle. The vanes rotate when exposed to light. The reason for the rotation has been the cause of much scientific debate. It was invented by the chemist Sir William Crookes as the by-product of some chemical research. In the course of very accurate quantitative chemical work, he was weighing samples in a partially evacuated chamber to reduce the effect of air currents, and noticed the weighings were disturbed when sunlight shone on the balance. Investigating this effect, he devised the device named after him, still manufactured and sold to this day as a curiosity item. Learn More
    £26.99

    Out of stock

  4. Solar Radiometer on a clear braided Stem, Clear Globe 80mm

    Solar Radiometer on a clear braided Stem, Clear Globe 80mm

    This Solar Radiometer on a braided stem features innovative design. The globe is made of crystal clear Lauschaer crystal glass. In the glass globe is a 4-vane drive assembly, which turns under the influence of light. One side of each vane is black, the other is silver. The glass stem is woven from clear and glass filaments. The Crookes radiometer, also known as the light mill or solar engine, consists of an airtight glass bulb, containing a partial vacuum. Inside are a set of vanes which are mounted on a spindle. The vanes rotate when exposed to light. The reason for the rotation has been the cause of much scientific debate. It was invented by the chemist Sir William Crookes as the by-product of some chemical research. In the course of very accurate quantitative chemical work, he was weighing samples in a partially evacuated chamber to reduce the effect of air currents, and noticed the weighings were disturbed when sunlight shone on the balance. Investigating this effect, he devised the device named after him, still manufactured and sold to this day as a curiosity item. Learn More
  5. Solar Radiometer on a short stem Amber coloured Globe (80mm)

    Solar Radiometer on a short stem Amber coloured Globe (80mm)

    This Solar Radiometer is made by traditional Thuringian hand-blowing in Germany, of Lauschaer bottle glass - amber-coloured for the globe, clear for the top and foot. In the glass body is a 4-vane drive assembly, which turns under the influence of light. One side of each vane is black, the other is silver. Height: ca. 15cm. (6 in) Globe diameter: ca. 8cm. (3. 25 in) The Crookes radiometer, also known as the light mill or solar engine, consists of an airtight glass bulb, containing a partial vacuum. Inside are a set of vanes which are mounted on a spindle. The vanes rotate when exposed to light. The reason for the rotation has been the cause of much scientific debate. It was invented by the chemist Sir William Crookes as the by-product of some chemical research. In the course of very accurate quantitative chemical work, he was weighing samples in a partially evacuated chamber to reduce the effect of air currents, and noticed the weighings were disturbed when sunlight shone on the balance. Investigating this effect, he devised the device named after him, still manufactured and sold to this day as a curiosity item. Learn More
    £26.95

    Out of stock

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