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Every student who studies atmospheric pressure in physics or chemistry learns the principles behind the construction of barometers. Cistern barometers, such as those found in most laboratories, consist of a long glass tube containing an inverted column of liquid having an open end in a cistern of the liquid. Students learn that the column of liquid is supported by air pressure and is equal in weight to a column of air of the same diameter.


Published in the Physics Teacher, 48(3), 191, 2010. Copyright © 2010, Physics Teacher. Used by permission.

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