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Used in meteorology, an anemometer is a device for measuring the wind. Below you'll find all the information you need to choose an anemometer, install it and make use of the weather data it provides.

What is a wind gauge for?

Well-known among meteorologists, an anemometer is used to calculate wind speed and pressure. Often integrated into a weather station and paired with a weather vane, it also shows the direction of the wind and is used to fine-tune meteorological information. For example, the information provided can be used to define the ambient temperature felt depending on the wind or to make longer-term weather forecasts.
However, a anemometer isn't just for weather professionals. The information it provides about wind speed, direction and pressure is useful in many fields. Anemometers can be found in sectors like air transport, navigation and public works, where measuring the wind is crucial. Whether it's used to manoeuvre a ship or plane, spray a treatment on a vineyard or define the position of a wind farm, an anemometer is an essential tool.
Weather information about the wind is also sometimes needed in leisure, which is why many gardeners and people involved in sports or outdoor activities use an anemometer, often a portable version. People who participate in aerial sports, parachuting, climbing, paragliding and water sports also know that information on wind speed and direction is essential for their safety. Even if you're just flying a kite rather than a plane, a wind gauge is still really useful!

What type of wind gauge to choose

Very different types of anemometers are available. It's up to you to decide which product meets your requirements based on the information you need to collect and how you'll use your device. The different types include a helicoid gauge (also called a weather vane wind gauge), a rotating vane gauge, an ultrasonic gauge and a pocket gauge.
  • Weather vane wind gauge: This classic model provides highly reliable information on wind speed and pressure. It needs to be installed at a height, often on a roof. A propeller revolves around a horizontal axis and faces into the wind. Often connected to a station, it can be supplemented with other sensors to collect other data.
  • Rotating vane wind gauge: Vanes rotating around an axis are used to measure wind speed.
  • Ultrasonic wind gauge: The wind is measured by measuring the transit time of an ultrasonic wave. On this model there are only fixed components, which is safer if there are extreme weather conditions.
  • Hot wire wind gauge: A heated metal wire connected to an electrical current is cooled down by the wind. This cooling is measured to determine the wind speed.
For mobile use, a wireless electronic pocket anemometer is best. Although less accurate, these types of devices can be carried during outdoor activities. The determining factors when buying these types of products are the weight and the size of the screen for reading the data. Most portable instruments only provide wind speed data, although some also indicate the perceived temperature.
It's best to know what kind of measurements a device can provide: in addition to basic information, they can also measure the maximums and minimums and read speed during gusts of wind. On the whole, the larger your budget is, the more powerful and wider-range a product you can buy. Additional sensors can be fitted for a more comprehensive analysis of weather conditions, including a [rain gauge], thermal sensor and hygrometer. Discover all our products

How do you install a anemometer?

An anemometer shouldn't be installed just anywhere. Although it's a reliable instrument if installed in the right place, it can also produce incorrect readings if not properly positioned. Choose an open area free from obstacles that could affect the rotation of the propeller and the calculation of wind pressure.
If you have a static model, it's best to install it at a height, ideally at least 3 metres. If you're able to position your weather instrument higher up, even better! Follow the manufacturer's installation instructions carefully to calibrate and orient the system, place the sensors and make sure that everything is positioned level. If installing a static instrument on a roof, a weather vane wind gauge is the best choice due to lightning. Consider earthing the anemometer or fitting your home with a lightning rod. Once the instrument is in place, you just have to connect it to your weather station.

Why choose a smart wind gauge?

Of all the products available, a smart anemometer provides real benefits. It lets you view the data on your laptop or smartphone and receive notifications if there's a particular phenomenon thanks to an app, even if you're away. This system usually works with a station that is easy to operate, which also gives you information on temperature and humidity. These are measured with a dedicated sensor or a hygrometer. Netatmo's ultrasonic technology produces extremely reliable measurements.

Make sure you purchase compatible instruments. The same brand usually offers a whole range of dedicated products for an optimal result.

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