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Current meter, probably made by Alexander Adie & Son

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probably made in Edinburgh

Current meter, probably made by Alexander Adie & Son
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Current meters measure the current in moving water. This brass example (pictured here in its fitted wooden case) was made around 1850, probably by Alexander Adie & Son, scientific instrument makers based in Edinburgh.

This device, which has two linked dials superimposed one on the other in the meter, can record the rate of flow of tide in an estuary, or can ascertain the rate of a ship's speed.

The instrument is a development of Joseph Saxton's water current meter, first published in 1836, the mechanism of which was credited by Brewster to Francis Wollaston, and used in the odometer, an instrument for measuring the distance travelled by carriages.

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