A thermometer is a device that measures temperature or a temperature gradient. A thermometer has two important elements: (1) a temperature sensor (e.g. the bulb of a mercury-in-glass thermometer) in which some physical change occurs with temperature, and (2) some means of converting this physical change into a numerical value (e.g. the visible scale that is marked on a mercury-in-glass thermometer). Thermometers are widely used in industry to control and regulate processes, in the study of weather, in medicine, and in scientific research.