Wind vane facts
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Wind Vane Facts
Banner-shaped plate of metal, or a weather-cock or -vane, placed on a pivot on a high part of a building, to point towards the direction from which the wind comes. The standard exposure for wind vanes is on a mast at 10 m above unobstructed ground. Learn more about citation styles Citation styles Encyclopedia.
More From encyclopedia. About this article wind vane All Sources. Updated Media sources 1 About encyclopedia. Related Topics wind. Turbines, Wind. Wind River Systems, Inc. Wind River Range.
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WinCo Foods Inc. Winckless, Sarah —. Winckler, Suzanne Winckler, Martin Wind, Herbert Warren — Wind, Yoram Jerry Windaus, Adolf Otto Reinhold. Windawi, Thura al- ? Winde, William.A weather vane is a device with a freely rotating pointer used to indicate the direction of the wind. Weather vanes served as simple devices for showing the direction of the wind and its speed for centuries. They were a critical tool for agriculturetravel and shipping.
They serve a largely decorative function today. They have been replaced by specialized weather instruments. To work correctly a weather vane should be at the highest point of a building.
It needs to be as far away as possible from other things that might interrupt the wind. The simplest form is a horizontal arrow or other form freely rotating on a vertical rod. When the wind blows, the arrow shows the direction and speed. The earliest known weather was made by the astronomer Andronicus in 48 BC.Wind Facts
It sat on top of the Tower of the Winds in Athens. It was between 4 feet 1. The word 'vane' comes from the Old English fana banner. This is related to the Old High German fano cloth ; from the Latin pannus cloth or rag. A "jin-pole" being used to install a weather vane atop the foot steeple of a church in Kingston, New York. Weather vane facts for kids Kids Encyclopedia Facts. A moose shaped weather vane.
A mermaid weathervane. A Douglas DC-3 converted to a weather vane. A rooster weather vane also called a weathercock. Clock tower in Belgium with weather vanes. Admiralty boardroom, ; a wind indicator can be seen on the end wall. All content from Kiddle encyclopedia articles including the article images and facts can be freely used under Attribution-ShareAlike license, unless stated otherwise.
Cite this article:. This page was last modified on 11 Marchat Wind Facts For Kids. Learn how wind forms, what we use to measure wind speed and direction, what sports take advantage of wind, what solar wind is and much more. It is caused by differences in air pressure. Air rushes from high pressure areas to lower ones. Anemometers are used to measure wind speed.
Make an anemometer. A knot is a unit often used to measure wind speed. Make a wind vane. Sea breezes occur because heat from the Sun takes longer to warm the sea than the land, creating a difference in air pressure.
Wind can provide energy through the use of wind turbines. More on wind energy. Many sports and recreational activities make use of the wind, these include kite boarding, wind surfing, sailing and paragliding.
Saturn and Neptune feature the fastest planetary winds in the Solar System. Wind Facts For Kids Check out our fun wind facts for kids and enjoy a range of interesting information about wind.
Wind is the flow of gases, here on Earth it refers to the movement of air. Short bursts of wind moving at high speeds are known as gusts. Depending on their strength, winds can be known as a breeze, gale, storm or hurricane. Wind direction is given by the direction from which the wind comes. Weather vanes are used to indicate wind direction. Sailing ships use wind to power their movement with the help of sails. Solar wind in outer space is a stream of charged particles that come from the Sun.A weather vane is a device used for determining the direction the wind is blowing.
Weather vanes have been used since ancient times and have graced the steeples of grand cathedrals and the roofs of the most rustic barns. They were probably the first instruments ever used to measure and predict the weather. They have been used to indicate that a storm is coming and the crop must be brought in from the field. They have warned of a coming cold snap. In the ninth century, the pope is said to have decreed that every church steeple show a cock, making the rooster a popular icon in weather vanes.
Weather vanes were used in Britain, Normandy and Germany to show archers the direction of the wind. The Bayeux Tapestry of shows a weathercock vane being placed on Westminster Abbey. The oldest weather vane in Britain is believed to be at Ottery St.
Mary, Devon, and dates to about It has whistling tubes so that the cock decoration makes a crowing sound. George Washington had a weather vane crafted for Mount Vernon in Most weather vanes consist of a rotating ornament that points the direction at the top of a rod. The weather vane usually includes a small globe at the top of the fixed portion of the rod and a larger globe at the bottom of the rod. A directional that indicates north, south, east or west is usually affixed to the rod between the two globes.
A weather vane points in the direction from which the wind is coming. This means, for example, that if the wind is coming from the west, the arrow will point to the west.
This would mean that if you were to face west, you would feel wind on your face. If your weather vane changes from west to east, this may be a signal that a mass of lower pressure is overhead and will bring storms. If the weather vane indicates a shift from the south or southwest, this may indicate that warmer air is on the way.
If the vane is swinging erratically, this means the air is unstable and the current weather conditions are changing. Bethney Foster is social justice coordinator for Mercy Junction ministry, where she edits the monthly publication "Holy Heretic. She graduated from Campbellsville University, receiving a Bachelor of Arts in English, journalism and political science.
For an in-depth explanation of how a weather vane works, view the video below:. About the Author. Photo Credits.A weather vanewind vaneor weathercock is an instrument used for showing the direction of the wind.
It is typically used as an architectural ornament to the highest point of a building. The word vane comes from the Old English word fanameaning 'flag'. Although partly functional, weather vanes are generally decorative, often featuring the traditional cockerel design with letters indicating the points of the compass. Other common motifs include ships, arrows and horses. Not all weather vanes have pointers. When the wind is sufficiently strong, the head of the arrow or cockerel or equivalent depending on the chosen design will indicate the direction from which the wind is blowing.
The weather vane was independently invented in ancient China and Greece around the same time during the 2nd century BCE. The earliest written reference to a weather vane appears in the Huainanziand a weather vane was fitted on top of the Tower of the Winds in Athens. Below this was a frieze adorned with the eight Greek wind deities. The eight-metre-high structure also featured sundialsand a water clock inside. It dates from around 50 BC. It was called 'Ling Tai' because it was originally intended for observations of the Yin and the Yang and the changes occurring in the celestial bodies, but in the Han it began to be called Qing Tai.
Guo Yuansheng, in his Shu Zheng Ji Records of Military Expeditionssays that south of the palaces there was a Ling Tai, fifteen ren feet high, upon the top of which was the armillary sphere made by Zhang Heng. Also there was a wind-indicating bronze bird xiang feng tong wuwhich was moved by the wind; and it was said that the bird moved when a li wind was blowing. There was also a bronze gnomon 8 feet high, with a 13 feet long and 1 foot 2 inches broad.
According to an inscription, this was set up in the 4th year of the Taichu reign-period BCE. The oldest surviving weather vane with the shape of a rooster is the Gallo di Rampertomade in CE and now preserved in the Museo di Santa Giulia in BresciaLombardy. Peter's Basilica or old Constantinian basilica. Pope Gregory I said that the cock rooster "was the most suitable emblem of Christianity", being "the emblem of St Peter", a reference to Luke in which Jesus predicts that Peter will deny him three times before the rooster crows.
As a result of this,  the cock gradually began to be used as a weather vane on church steeples, and in the 9th century Pope Nicholas I  ordered the figure to be placed on every church steeple.
The Bayeux Tapestry of the s depicts a man installing a cock on Westminster Abbey. One alternative theory about the origin of weathercocks on church steeples is that it was an emblem of the vigilance of the clergy calling the people to prayer. Another theory says that the cock was not a Christian symbol  but an emblem of the sun  derived from the Goths. A few churches used weather vanes in the shape of the emblems of their patron saints. The City of London has two surviving examples.
The weather vane of St Peter upon Cornhill is not in the shape of a rooster, but a key;  while St Lawrence Jewry 's weather vane is in the form of a gridiron.
Early weather vanes had very ornamental pointers, but modern weather vanes are usually simple arrows that dispense with the directionals because the instrument is connected to a remote reading station. An early example of this was installed in the Royal Navy's Admiralty building in London — the vane on the roof was mechanically linked to a large dial in the boardroom so senior officers were always aware of the wind direction when they met.
Modern aerovanes combine the directional vane with an anemometer a device for measuring wind speed. Co-locating both instruments allows them to use the same axis a vertical rod and provides a co-ordinated readout. The city of Montague, Michigan also claims to have the largest standard-design weather vane, being a ship and arrow which measures 48 feet tall, with an arrow 26 feet long.Prior to the introduction of modern technologies, early man had few ways to determine which way the wind blew.
For centuries, wind vanes served as a simple means of detecting wind speed and direction, making them a critical tool for shipping, travel, agriculture and weather prediction. Today these wind vanes serve a largely decorative function, evoking a rich sense of history while still acting as a practical tool for those who need to track the wind.
What is a Wind Vane?
The weather vane should be positioned at the highest point on a building and should be situated as far as possible from nearby structures that could interfere with its operation.
These devices consist of a rotating horizontal arrow or other structure mounted on a stationary vertical rod. As the wind blows, the horizontal member rotates to indicate both the direction and the speed of the wind. The lightest and smallest portion of the horizontal member, such as the arrowhead, points into the wind. Greek astronomer Andronicus created the first recorded weather vane around 48 B.
It sat atop the Tower of the Winds in Athens and was designed as a tribute to Triton. Built from bronze, the weather vane featured the head and torso of a man and the tail of a fish.
A wand held in Triton's hand indicated wind direction.
During this period, wealthy Greek and Romans adorned their homes with wind vanes in the shape of the ancient Gods. Starting in the ninth century, Scandinavians began to use wind vanes on ships and church roofs. Scandinavian units were shaped like a quarter-circle, and rotated around a vertical axis.
They were often positioned at the front of Viking ships, and many were adorned with animals or other designs. The ninth century also brought about the use of the rooster-shaped weather vane found on many historic churches. According to Smithsonian Magazine, Pope Nicholas I decreed that every church should be topped with a cock-shaped wind vane as a reminder of the biblical prophecy referencing Peter's betrayal of Jesus.
During the Middle Ages, public buildings in Europe were typically adorned with weather vanes that took the shape of an arrow or pennant. The word vane comes from "fane," a term that means "flag. These flags helped to inspire weather vane designs for many years.
The first maker of weathervane and wind vanes in North America was Shem Drowne, who manufactured weather vanes during the early s. He designed the famous grasshopper vane that once sat atop Boston's Faneuil Hall inalong with many other well-known vanes of the period.
To commemorate the Revolutionary War, George Washington commissioned a dove of peace weather vane to sit atop his home.
By the s, patriotic wind vane designs were quite common, and many were mass-produced. The late 19th century ushered in a Victorian style of design, and weather vanes became much more ornate and grand. By the 20th century, these units took on a largely decorative function, with many inspired by sports or nature. The world's largest functional wind vane can be found in Montague, Michigan.
It measures It features a traditional arrow shape with a decorative ship on top. A less traditional plus-sized wind vane can be found at Whitehorse in the Yukon.
It's made from a retired CF-CPY airplane that's so perfectly balanced, it takes a wind speed of just 2. The nose of this plane points into the direction of the wind, just like smaller, more traditional wind vanes. Emily Beach works in the commercial construction industry in Maryland. Green Building Council in and is in the process of working towards an Architectural Hardware Consultant certification from the Door and Hardware Institute.
She received a bachelor's degree in economics and management from Goucher College in Towson, Maryland. About the Author. Photo Credits. Copyright Leaf Group Ltd.What is a Wind Vane? A wind vane, also known as the weather vane, is one of the earliest invented meteorological tools used to show the direction of the wind. It has a pointer that freely rotates on the top of a fixed vertical rod and shows which way the wind is blowing.
It was designed to swing easily and point to the direction from which the wind was blowing. Information about wind and weather has always been vital for the shipping fleets, armies, fishing and farming since the days of yore.
Earlier, neither were there any advanced techniques or gadgets of weather forecast nor there were any sophisticated means of communication like television, mobiles and computers that could have conveyed the timely information regarding the weather to the masses. During the early s, people relied on first-hand observation, experience and folk wisdom to predict the weather and wind condition.
A common practice was to toss a blade of grass into the air, to find out the direction of the wind.
What Is a Wind Vane?
The wind vane consists of two parts, a pointer and a fixed cardinal directional marker, pointing toward the north, south, east and west. The pointer is shaped in such a way that the mass of each end is even but each end has different volumes.
When the wind catches the thick end of the pointer, it swings it around and the arrow points towards the direction in which the wind is blowing. A weather vane will not work if the weights are not equal or the volume of each side is the same. The arrow design is the most popular design for the weather vanes because of its accuracy, simplicity and affordable cost. In modern times, weather vanes find their use as ornamentation for many buildings.
You can still find expensive and aesthetically designed weather vanes majestically perched on the rooftops of some buildings in India as well as abroad. Learn Physics Science. Physics yrs Reading Pod, Interactive. What is a Weather Vane?
Weather Forecast Information about wind and weather has always been vital for the shipping fleets, armies, fishing and farming since the days of yore. What is a Wind Vane made up of? How does a Wind Vane work? Where is it found? At the airports, wind direction may also be shown by a cone-shaped bag known as the wind cone, wind sock, wind sleeve.
Some of the popular ornaments on wind vanes include galloping horses, roosters, fish, mermaids, angels, and ships. Meteorologists use a device known as an aerovane that shows the direction of the wind and can also measure the wind speed. How is the weight of a ship measured? What is electromagnetism?
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