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ceilometer

[see-lom-i-ter, si-]
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.
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Origin of ceilometer

First recorded in 1940–45; ceil(ing) + -o- + -meter
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for ceilometer

ceilometer

noun
  1. a device for determining the cloud ceiling, esp by means of a reflected light beam
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Word Origin for ceilometer

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

ceilometer in Science

ceilometer

[sē-lŏmĭ-tər]
  1. 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.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.