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Difference Between Celsius and Centigrade

Celsius vs. Centigrade

For those who do not understand temperature measurements entirely, Celsius and centigrade may seem to share the same meaning. For most purposes, the words “centigrade” and “Celsius” are common synonyms of one another and interchangeably used by the English language. Both Celsius and centigrade are used only in reference to the Celsius temperature scale and not to Fahrenheit or Kelvin temperature measurements. Since Celsius is not the scale of temperature measurement in the United States, there is much more influence in Europe where the scale was originally developed.

The Celsius scale was created in 1741 by the scientist Anders Celsius. The Celsius scale he originally designed was set at 0 degrees being the point at which water would boil and 100 degrees was the temperature that water would freeze. When the famous Celsius died, the scale was altered into water freezing at 0 degrees and 100 degrees was where water boiled. Most countries in the world use Celsius as a unit of measurement to explain the temperature in degrees similar to the way Americans use the Fahrenheit scale. Centigrade was referred to as the units of Celsius until around 1948. In addition to having a reference to temperature, centigrade was thought to mean one-hundredth of a grade. For that reason it lost commonality among scientists. Additionally, this is the reason that centigrade was phased out by the people of France and Spain first then by the remainder of European countries. Centigrade can be used in the same way as Celsius for a 0 degree freezing and 100 degree boiling point. In scientific journals and articles it is more common to use the term “centigrade” over “Celsius” as it was more commonly used when the scale was developed.

In 1887, a hydrogen thermometer was used to measure the centigrade scale. This measurement was identical to the Celsius mercury scale by 0.1 degree. This solidified the idea that measuring Celsius and centigrade should be essentially the same, and the word “centigrade” was phased out of some countries. Celsius can be abbreviated by using the letter “C “alone. Typically, a number and degree symbol will proceed before the abbreviation. Like the Kelvin system of temperature measurement, Celsius has an absolute zero, however, it is at -273.15°C. In the United Kingdom, the Celsius scale is exclusively used, however, the English call it centigrade rather than Celsius.
For most purposes, Celsius and centigrade are the same and deal with the same temperature scale as the other.

1.Celsius and centigrade are related to the same temperature scale that is Celsius not Kelvin or Fahrenheit. Celsius is more commonly used across the world. The U.S. uses the Fahrenheit scale and scientists use Kelvin.
2.The Celsius scale was created by scientist Anders Celsius. The units of Celsius was termed centigrade until 1948.
3.The Celsius scale states that at 0 degrees water freezes and centers the boiling point for water at 100 degrees. Celsius is abbreviated by the capital “C.”
4.Centigrade was phased out as it carries another meaning; one-hundredth of a grade.

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  1. “In the United Kingdom, the Celsius scale is exclusively used, however, the English call it centigrade rather than Celsius.”

    Not exactly true, as you will still find Fahrenheit used in weather forecasting (along with degrees C) and in cookery recipes/instructions for ready meals. There are probably more instances, but these immediately come to mind.

    Usage of Fahrenheit will probably die out with those of us who still remember pre-decimal coinage.

    • People native to the United Kingdom are not exclusively English.

      • To Michael Flynn

        I don’t believe I said or implied that all people in the UK are English, nationality, ethnic origin or citizenship is irrelevant. My intention is in pointing out that Fahrenheit is still in use and can be seen in many places. Celsius/Centigrade is not exclusive. If you doubt this, look at the examples I mentioned.

  2. 1 °c = how many °f

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