Health Monitor: Covid-19, First Case of Human Transmission to Animal  |  Leadership Instincts: Government launches an Empowered Group chaired by CEO NITI Aayog  |  Teacher Insights: KV Sangathan takes various steps for Online Teaching-Learning Process  |  Education Information: Not Sure of Reliability of News? Get It Verified at Covid19 Fact Check Unit  |  Science Innovations: Covid-19: DST funded startup develops chemical free silver based disinfectant   |  Technology Inceptions: A cost-effective virucidal coating of surgical masks from IIT Kanpur  |  Leadership Instincts: CSIR-IMTECH takes up sample testing for Covid-19  |  Creative Living: Music Industry Turns to Social Media To Bring Solace in Times of Pandemic  |  National Edu News: Hack the Crisis, Online Hackathon for Covid 19 Solutions  |  National Edu News: HRD Minister launches MHRD AICTE COVID-19 Student Helpline Portal   |  Science Innovations: University of Pittsburgh Covid-19 Vaccine Undergoes Animal Trials Successfully  |  Teacher Insights: UNICEF launches #ReadtheWorld initiative for children   |  Science Innovations: Covid-19 -Tracing the Route Map of the Clever Spiky Protein  |  Teacher Insights: Dr Christine Yao announced as BBC New Generation Thinker  |  International Edu News: New research on COVID-19's impact on youth mental health   |  
October 25, 2017 Wednesday 04:08:02 PM IST

Fresh tool to improve monsoon forecast

Science Innovations

New York: Researchers from Florida State University in the US have created a tool for objectively defining the onset and demise of the Indian summer monsoon. The new method, published in the journal Climate Dynamics, uses rainfall rates to mark the span of the monsoon at any given location throughout the affected region.

"Current weather forecasting and monitoring protocols focus attention on monsoon onset at one location -- specifically the state of Kerala in the southwest corner of the country -- and extrapolate for the rest of the region," said lead investigator Vasu Misra, Associate Professor of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Science. "We have gone down to specific locations, we've covered the whole country, and we've objectively defined the onset and demise dates for any given year," Misra added.

With this methodology, a question that has baffled meteorologists for decades finally can have a simple, actionable answer. "You don't need complicated definitions," Misra said. "Now we completely base the definition on rainfall, and it hasn't failed," Misra added.

The lack of a clear, granular and objective benchmark for monsoon onset and demise for all areas of the country has been a longtime source of anxiety for the Indian people.


In some parts of the country, the torrents of rain that characterise monsoon season account for more than 90 per cent of the total annual precipitation. Consequently, many rhythms of Indian political and agricultural life can be destabilised by dubious or false claims of monsoon onset.

"That leads to tremendous amounts of frustration and confusion for the general public and for the people who are trying to monitor the monsoon because nobody has really gotten down to do it at a granular scale," Misra said. This new system, which ties the onset of the monsoon to location-specific rainfall thresholds, can work to allay that frustration, according to the researchers.

Anchoring the definition of onset and demise solely in local rain rates eliminates the need to rely on less accessible atmospheric variables. This streamlined approach makes it considerably easier to monitor monsoon evolution, the study said. 

"Our research enables quite easy real-time monitoring of the onset and demise of the Indian monsoon," Misra said. "We've tested this for 105 years of available data, and this criterion hasn't failed once for any location over India," Misra added.


Comments