Chinese Rain-Making System Three Times the Size of Spain

By: | May 6th, 2018

China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation is building a massive rain-making system that is three times the size of Spain. To meet the need of more water, the Chinese are testing this weather modification system in the Tibetan Plateau. This system is expected to increase rainfall by as much as 10 billion cubic meters, or around 353 billion cubic feet, every year.

Thousands of chambers across the Tibetan mountains will generate silver iodide to seed clouds

Scientists are planning to build tens of thousands of chambers across the Tibetan mountains to generate rain over an area of around 1.6 million square kilometers (620,000 square miles). The chambers will burn solid fuel to generate silver iodide, which is a “cloud-seeding” agent. These chambers will be located on steep mountain ridges facing the south Asia monsoon.

As wind hits the mountain slopes, the resulting upward draft should push the silver iodide particles into the clouds above. Clouds seeded with these crystalline structures will then bring rain and snow.

Although the rain-making system sounds very impressive, scientists have some doubts

Jeff Masters, a meteorologist and weather blogger at Weather Underground, said, “Research studies have shown that cloud seeding can increase rainfall over limited areas in some conditions, but it is controversial whether or not cloud seeding on such a large scale as the Chinese are attempting can lead to a regional increase in precipitation.”

Nidhi Goyal

Nidhi is a gold medalist Post Graduate in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences.

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