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Clinometer facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
Stanley compass 1
Compass with inclinometer
Sitometer Kern 2
Military model

A clinometer or inclinometer is an instrument for measuring angles of slope (or tilt), elevation or depression of an object with respect to gravity. It is also known as a tilt meter, tilt indicator, slope alert, slope gauge, gradient meter, gradiometer, level gauge, level meter, declinometer, and pitch & roll indicator.

Clinometers measure both inclines (positive slopes, as seen by an observer looking upwards) and declines (negative slopes, as seen by an observer looking downward) using three different units of measure.

Applications

  • Determining latitude using Polaris (in the Northern Hemisphere) or the two stars of the constellation Crux (in the Southern Hemisphere).
  • Determining the angle of the Earth's magnetic field with respect to the horizontal plane.
  • Showing a deviation from the true vertical or horizontal.
  • Surveying, to measure an angle of inclination or elevation.
  • Alerting an equipment operator that it may tip over.
  • Measuring angles of elevation, slope, or incline, e.g. of an embankment.
  • Measuring slight differences in slopes, particularly for geophysics.
  • Measuring movements in walls or the ground in civil engineering projects.
  • Determining the the slope of an embankment or cutting; a kind of plumb level.
  • Some automotive safety systems.
  • Indicating pitch and roll of vehicles, nautical craft, and aircraft.
  • Monitoring the boom angle of cranes and material handlers.
  • Measuring the "look angle" of a satellite antenna towards a satellite.
  • Adjusting a solar panel to the optimal angle to maximize its output.
  • Measuring the slope angle of a tape or chain during distance measurement.
  • Measuring the height of a building, tree, or other feature using a vertical angle and a distance (determined by taping or pacing), using trigonometry.
  • Measuring the angle of drilling in well logging.
  • Measuring the list of a ship in still water and the roll in rough water.
  • Measuring steepness of a ski slope.
  • Measuring the orientation of planes and lineations in rocks, in combination with a compass, in structural geology.
  • Measuring range of motion in the joints of the body.
  • Measuring the inclination angle of the pelvis.
  • Measuring the angles of elevation to the altitudes of, many things otherwise inaccessible for direct measurement.
  • Measuring and fine tuning the angle of line array speaker hangs.
  • Setting correct orientation of solar panels while installing.
  • Setting firing angle of a cannon or gun (determines projectile range).
  • Electronic games

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