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Wet-bulb temperature

Wet-bulb temperature is measured using a standard mercury-in-glass thermometer, with the thermometer bulb wrapped in muslin, which is kept wet. The evaporation of water from the thermometer has a cooling effect, so the temperature indicated by the wet bulb thermometer is less than the temperature indicated by a dry-bulb (normal, unmodified) thermometer. The rate of evaporation from the wet-bulb thermometer depends on the humidity of the air - evaporation is slower when the air is already full of water vapour. For this reason, the difference in the temperatures indicated by the two thermometers gives a measure of atmospheric humidity.