Many methods have been developed for measuring temperature. Most of these rely on measuring some physical property of a working material that varies with temperature.
One of the most common devices for measuring temperature is the glass thermometer. This consists of a glass tube filled with mercury or some other liquid, which acts as the working fluid.
Temperature increase causes the fluid to expand, so the temperature can be determined by measuring the volume of the fluid. Such thermometers are usually calibrated so that one can read the temperature simply by observing the level of the fluid in the thermometer.
Another type of thermometer that is not really used much in practice, but is important from a theoretical standpoint, is the gas thermometer.
Other important devices for measuring temperature include
- Langmuir probes (for electron temperature of a plasma)
- infrared thermometers
- other thermometers