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ceilometer

[see-lom-i-ter, si-] /siˈlɒm ɪ tər, sɪ-/
noun
1.
an automatic device for measuring and recording the height of clouds by projecting a modulated beam of light onto a cloud base, receiving the reflection of light through a photoelectric apparatus, and computing the height by triangulation.
Origin
1940-1945
1940-45; ceil(ing) + -o- + -meter
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples for ceilometer
  • Spring migration studied by mist netting, ceilometer, and radar.
  • New parking lot light will be added as well as power to ceilometer.
British Dictionary definitions for ceilometer

ceilometer

/siːˈlɒmɪtə/
noun
1.
a device for determining the cloud ceiling, esp by means of a reflected light beam
Word Origin
C20: from ceiling + -meter
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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ceilometer in Science
ceilometer
  (sē-lŏm'ĭ-tər)   
An instrument for calculating the altitude of the lowest cloud layer in the sky. A ceilometer consists of a projector that shines an intense beam of light (usually laser light) at the cloud layer and a photoelectric cell that detects the light as it is reflected back. The distance between the projector and the photoelectric cell and the angle at which the light is detected are used to calculate the altitude of the cloud layer by triangulation; alternatively, the time required for the light to be reflected back to the detector may be used to measure the distance, as in radar.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Article for ceilometer

device for measuring the height of cloud bases. One important use of the ceilometer is to determine cloud ceilings at airports. The device works day or night by shining an intense beam of light (often ultraviolet), modulated at an audio frequency, at overhead clouds. Reflections of this light from the base of the clouds are detected by a photocell in the receiver of the ceilometer.

Learn more about ceilometer with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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