Cloud seeding trials take off in Mysore

Cloud seeding trials take off in Mysore

Cloud seeding trials take off in Mysore

At a time when the residents of Mysore and Mandya districts wait for rains to alleviate the water crisis, a private company has been conducting ‘basic trials’ in cloud seeding in the City of Palaces.

Speaking to Deccan Herald, chief pilot Captain Arvind Sharma of Agni Aviation confirmed that cloud seeding trials have started. A Piper Cheyenne aircraft has been kept on ‘operational standby’ to undertake seeding, depending on the formation of clouds in the catchment areas of the Kabini, the Cauvery and the Hemavathi River basins.

“The seeding will be carried out depending on the cloud formation in the coming days by the Piper Cheyenne aircraft, which has been stationed at Mandakalli Airport in Mysore,” Sharma said.

According to Sharma, “Cloud seeding is a technique of precipitation enhancement.” But unless there are “good clouds available,” it becomes impossible to carry out the process.  
Pointing out that there were good rains on Saturday, Sharma said that while nature was doing its job, the technique has only increased the amount of rainfall. He credits cloud seeding with having contributed 20 to 25 per cent of the rainfall.

Agni Aviation plans to employ cloud seeding techniques for the retreating monsoon, which will end by the first week of December.

“The window of opportunity is available until the first week of December. Cloud seeding will continue into Sunday and Monday,” Sharma said.

As there is no guarantee as to when clouds form, Sharma said that the aircraft and personnel involved in seeding will be placed on operational standby from morning to sunset until the first week of December.

Cloud seeding will not be undertaken at night because of safety reasons, he added.
Officials at the Agriculture Department have feigned ignorance over the seeding trials. A senior official, who requested anonymity, said that he was not aware of the development.

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