Madhya Pradesh: New monsoon research facility coming up at super site in the state

M Ravichandran, Secretary, Ministry of Earth Sciences made the announcement on the sidelines of the India International Science Festival in Bhopal.

PTIUpdated: Monday, January 23, 2023, 06:42 PM IST
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Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh): The centre is set to unveil a new monsoon research facility at a "super site" in Madhya Pradesh to study the monsoon phenomenon and make better seasonal forecasts by studying tropical clouds.

The Atmospheric Research Testbed-Central India (ART-CI) is shaping up at the 100-acre campus at Silkheda in Sehore district of Madhya Pradesh as a project of the Pune-based Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM), after battling delays due to Covid-19 pandemic and encroachment by locals on the site.

"The testbed is based at a unique location which falls under the monsoon core zone. We need to understand the monsoon process better. We need to have all the major operations at one critical location," M Ravichandran, Secretary, Ministry of Earth Sciences said on the sidelines of the India International Science Festival here.

At least 30 instruments and numerous sensors are scheduled to be installed at the site, located away from industrial activity and the hustle and bustle of the city and in the direct path of rain-bearing weather systems such as low pressure areas and depressions emerging from the Bay of Bengal.

"ART-CI is one of the super sites which will measure not only monsoon rainfall, but also give us basic parameters such as vertical profile of relative humidity, liquid water content, cloud properties, size of rain drops," a scientist working on the project said.

High-tech instruments already installed at the site

Instruments such as C-Band Dual Polarisation Radar, Ka-band Radars, Micro-Rain Radar, Met Tower, Microwave Radiometer, Ceilometer, Disdrometer, CCN Counter, Aethalometer have already been installed at the site.

A wind profiler, a W-Band radar, radiosonde, LIDAR, sky imager, complete radiation system, Sun/Sky radiometer are some of the instruments proposed to be installed at the site.

"Before the upcoming monsoon (2023) most of the acquired systems will be installed. Some observing facilities such as wind profiling radar, LIDAR needs to be procured next year and installed," G Pandithurai, Project Director of the ART-CI said.

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