What is Artificial Rain? China creating artificial rain to overcome its worst drought on record.
What is artificial rain? China is creating artificial rain to overcome its worst drought on record.
The Yangtze river basin’s drought, according to a warning from the Ministry of Water Resources, is “negatively affecting the drinking water security of rural people and cattle, as well as the growth of crops.”
To increase rainfall for the Yangtze River, which is vital to China, planes are shooting Silver Iodide rods into the sky.
What is Artificial Rain?
Releasing compounds into the atmosphere that served as cold condensation or ice nuclei modifies the weather. This process called cloud seeding, creates artificial rain.
Most cloud seeding techniques employ silver iodide to encourage the growth of ice crystals.
The cigarette-sized silver iodide rods are fired into existing clouds to aid in the formation of ice crystals. The cloud is subsequently given a boost in rain production by the crystals, increasing the amount of moisture in the cloud and its likelihood of release.
In its worst ever drought, China’s Yangtze River is running dry.
As the Yangtze River dries up in some important areas due to high temperatures, China is experiencing its worst drought on record. This affects crops and reduces the availability of drinking water in some rural villages.
According to Washington Post, the hardest-hit areas are in the central and southern provinces of China where a protracted heat wave has made the drought conditions worse.
Beijing has issued warnings about the threat of more extreme weather in China as a result of climate change, while other regions of the nation are still suffering from excessive rainfall.
State media claimed on Thursday that 16 people had died and another 36 were still missing as a result of flooding in the western Chinese province of Qinghai.
As reported by Reuters,
China’s State Grid pledged to use all reasonable efforts to send electricity to the neighboring Sichuan province, which typically produces big surpluses of hydroelectricity to the east but is currently enforcing severe consumption limitations.
According to media reports, businesses with operations in Sichuan, including Toyota of Japan and CATL, the world’s largest battery manufacturer, have halted manufacturing there.
The latest Method of cloud seeding with electricity
Cloud seeding with Silver Iodide is harmful to the environment. it is clearly explained by News18 in their conversation with Kondala Murali Mohan, a scientist with Krishi Vigyan Kendra (Medak)
Explaining the process, Kondala Murali Mohan, a scientist with Krishi Vigyan Kendra (Medak), said: “Cloud seeding is a process to create artificial rain. Here, chemicals like silver iodide, potassium iodide, and dry ice are sent to the atmosphere through helicopters or planes. These particles attract the water vapor in the air, leading to the formation of cumulonimbus clouds and finally rain. It generally takes half an hour to produce rainfall by this method. The time taken to generate rain depends on which portion of the cloud the chemicals are being injected into. Zapping the top layers gives the fastest results.”
However, these experiments are harmful to the environment. The scientist added: “The method can lead to acidification of the oceans, ozone layer depletion, and an increase in the levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide. Silver is a heavy, toxic metal and it harms the health of plants, humans, and animals. Cloud seeding is also a costly method. A foot of rainfall costs around USD 200.”
UAE tested a new method that had drones fly into clouds to give them an electric shock to trigger rain production.
Since the electric charge was delivered by battery-operated drones, the Dubai experiment is regarded as a greener substitute for conventional approaches. The University of Reading carried out the Dubai rain-making experiment.
The University of Reading had stated in a press statement that the electric charge approach works by making the droplets adhere to one another, again enhancing the growth rate. Aircraft will also be used to administer this, but they will be small, battery-powered, remote-controlled ones that are greener.
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