This sensor reminds me of an automotive mass airflow sensor.
http://shop.moderndevice.com/products/wind-sensor - The Wind Sensor is a thermal anemometer based on a traditional technique for measuring wind speed. The technique is called the “hot-wire” technique, and involves heating an element to a constant temperature and then measuring the electrical power that is required to maintain the heated element at temperature as the wind changes. This measured electrical input is then directly proportional to the wind speed. Hot wire anemometers are available in hand-held packages resembling multimeters, but this is the first small sensor suitable for electronic experiments.