Aristotle’s monumental works of meteorology date back to 350 B.C. and he is aptly regarded as the creator of this field of research. Another Greek scientist named Theophrastus threw light on the fascinating topic of weather prediction. ‘The Book of Signs’ is one of the foundational works for the science of meteorology and retained its stature for close to 2000 years. The Romans entered the scene in the year 25 A.D., with Pomponius Mela adding valuable information to the studies of weather. The impact of weather patterns on agriculture and related practices was explained by Al-Dinawari, a Kurdish scholar, in the ninth century. His work, called the Kitab-al-Nabat (the Book of Plants) is a comprehensive text that talks about phenomena like rains and thunderstorms, lightning, rivers, lakes, floods, etc.
The characteristics of atmosphere as regards refraction and reflection were studied and presented in around 1021 by Ibn al-Haytham. His studies explained several phenomena like the twilight and the brightening up of the sky even before the sun actually rises. Another famous scientist, St. Albert the Great, rose to fame with his argument that each water droplet from rain acquired a spherical shape, and this also explained the startling rainbow patterns. It was established that light interacted with the spherical water droplets in order to give the beautiful rainbow pattern. The era from the fifteenth century onwards was one of advancements in the field of instrumentation that aided research in meteorology and it commenced in 1441 with the invention of the standard rain gauge by Prince Munjong, son of King Sejong. This was extensively used by the tax departments in Korea to levy taxes on farmers according to their harvest capability. Galileo constructed the first thermo scope in the year 1607, followed by Kepler’s study on snow crystals in 1611.
Toricelli’s invention of the mercuric barometer in 1662 is regarded as a major breakthrough in the field of meteorology. Mercury was also utilized to design the Fahrenheit temperature scale. In 1742, the idea of the Celsius scale of temperature, which is widely used today, was conceptualized by Anders Celsius. The first edition of the International Cloud Atlas was published in the end of the nineteenth century, and has remained in print till today. TIROS-1, the first weather satellite, was launched in April 1960, and this marked the beginning of the modern age of meteorology.