Research and education quanta of an experimental physicist

RELATIVE HUMIDITY

May 07, 2014 learning humidity phys-332

At a certain temperature and pressure, a blob of gas can only hold a certain amount of water vapor inside. If the temperature drops or the pressure increases, the maximum water vapor that this blob of gas can hold also drops.
The water vapor starts to condensate on some cold surface as dewdrops. The temperature, at which the water vapor starts to condensate, is called the dew point. It is an absolute measure of the humidity of the gas at certain pressure. The higher the humidity, the easier for the water vapor to condensate (One does not need to lower the temperature a lot to see some dewdrops), and the higher the dew point. The dew point is a function of pressure.

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Blogs on physics research and educational activities of Jing LIU, an assistant professor in physics at the University of South Dakota. He is an experimental physicist developing novel particle detectors for astroparticle physics and civil use.