Traveling microscope vs vernier calliper

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In summary: The vernier calliper is inappropriate because it is difficult to get an accurate measurement of something as erratic as a water stream using a hand held measuring device. Judging the actual points of contact between gauge faces and water stream is very subjective and the measuring device would have to be continually moved to new positions as the water stream wandered around. The traveling microscope is suitable for this measurement because it is set up in a fixed position which is much better. Long observations can now be used to establish the mean position of the left side of the water stream and similarly the right side and thus get a reasonably accurate average stream width. Other averaging methods are also possible.In practical terms, neither vernier nor microscope perform very well in water
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Hi, there is a question I am not sure about. We are trying to measure the width(thickness) of water as it is streaming from the tap and draining into the sink, my question is why use of vernier calliper is inappropriate and traveling microscope is suitable for this measurement? Thanks
 
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It is difficult to get an accurate measurement of something as erratic as a water stream using a hand held measuring device . Judging the actual points of contact between gauge faces and water stream is very subjective and the measuring device would have to be continually moved to new positions as the water stream wandered around .

A traveling microscope can be set up in a fixed position which is much better . Long observations can now be used to establish the mean position of the left side of the water stream and similarly the right side and thus get a reasonably accurate average stream width . Other averaging methods are also possible .

In practical terms neither vernier nor microscope perform very well in water unless they have special protection built in . Use an IP64 or better Vernier and arrange some splash guarding for the microscope - plastic bags will do .
 
  • #3
Ideally, a measurement does not influence the 'thing' to be measured. But: experiment !
 
  • #4
ryanuser said:
Hi, there is a question I am not sure about. We are trying to measure the width(thickness) of water as it is streaming from the tap and draining into the sink, my question is why use of vernier calliper is inappropriate and traveling microscope is suitable for this measurement? Thanks
Maybe parallax is too much of a problem with the calipers, since you have to move your head back and forth to try to take the reading. You don't have a way to be sure that your eye is looking at a right angle to the stream, but with the traveling microscope, you are assured of no parallax issues.

http://suryaengineering.com/image/travelling%20microscope.jpg [Broken]
http://suryaengineering.com/image/travelling%20microscope.jpg [Broken]

EDIT -- Too slow again!
 
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  • #5
Nidum said:
In practical terms neither vernier nor microscope perform very well in water unless they have special protection built in . Use an IP64 or better Vernier and arrange some splash guarding for the microscope - plastic bags will do
I'm guessing that the scale goes behind the stream, and the microscope goes in front of it. As long as the arm supporting the microscope is offset enough, nothing seems like it should get wet...
 
  • #6
Why wouldn't you simply measure the diameter of the tap, the diameter of the drain, and the distance from drain edge to water stream (assuming the tap pours directly into the drain)? Is there some sort of dispering screen or object causing a change in the stream?

Another idea is to get a laser level with a rotating beam, place it on one side of the stream of water with a scale on the other side, and use a camera to record the distortion of the beam as shown on the scale. "Rinse and repeat" at multiple heights above the drain.
 
  • #7
ryanuser said:
Hi, there is a question I am not sure about. We are trying to measure the width(thickness) of water as it is streaming from the tap and draining into the sink, my question is why use of vernier calliper is inappropriate and traveling microscope is suitable for this measurement? Thanks

People measure the properties of fluid jets all the time: take a photo and use whatever you like to measure the width at various locations. Why make the measurement as complicated as possible?
 

What is a traveling microscope and how is it different from a vernier calliper?

A traveling microscope is a scientific instrument used to measure the dimensions of small objects with high accuracy. It consists of a microscope mounted on a movable stage that can be adjusted to measure the length or thickness of an object. A vernier calliper, on the other hand, is a handheld tool used to measure linear dimensions such as length, diameter, or thickness. The main difference between the two is that a traveling microscope uses precise optical magnification for measurement, while a vernier calliper relies on mechanical measurement using a calibrated scale and a vernier scale.

Which instrument is more accurate for measuring small dimensions?

Both a traveling microscope and a vernier calliper can provide accurate measurements, but a traveling microscope is generally more accurate for measuring small dimensions. This is because it uses magnification to enhance the measurement, resulting in a more precise reading. A vernier calliper, while still accurate, may have a slight margin of error due to human error in reading the scales.

Can a traveling microscope be used for non-linear measurements?

No, a traveling microscope is specifically designed for linear measurements and cannot be used for non-linear measurements. It relies on a stage that moves in a straight line, making it unsuitable for measuring curved or irregular surfaces. In contrast, a vernier calliper can measure both linear and non-linear dimensions.

Which instrument is more commonly used in scientific research?

The choice between a traveling microscope and a vernier calliper depends on the specific research needs. However, in general, a traveling microscope is more commonly used in scientific research as it can provide highly accurate measurements for small objects. Vernier callipers are more commonly used in everyday applications or in industries such as engineering and manufacturing.

Do traveling microscopes and vernier callipers have any limitations?

Both instruments have their own limitations. A traveling microscope may be limited in its range of measurement and may not be suitable for measuring larger objects. A vernier calliper, on the other hand, may have limitations in terms of accuracy for very small dimensions. Additionally, both instruments require proper calibration and maintenance to ensure accurate measurements.

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