India-UK to carry out joint observation project to understand monsoon

The two-month long observation project led by India’s ministry of earth sciences and UK’s natural environment research council will be flagged off next week


The investment of <span class='WebRupee'>Rs.</span>40 crore will be shared equally by the two countries which will include 10 scientists from the Bengaluru-based Indian Institute of Science. Photo: AFP
The investment of Rs.40 crore will be shared equally by the two countries which will include 10 scientists from the Bengaluru-based Indian Institute of Science. Photo: AFP

New Delhi: In an effort to further understand processes behind the monsoon, India will carry out a joint observation project with the UK, involving land and ocean observations.

The two-month long observation project led by India’s ministry of earth sciences and UK’s natural environment research council will be flagged off next week, an earth sciences ministry official said.

The investment of Rs.40 crore will be shared equally by the two countries which will involve scientists from several scientific institutes. While UK’s team will involve 10 to 15 scientists from several institutes including University of Redding, University of Southampton and University of Leeds, the Indian team will include 10 scientists from the Bengaluru-based Indian Institute of Science.

As part of the project, scientists will carry surface observations across India and in the Bay of Bengal and air-based observations using an aircraft from the UK called the BAe-146 atmospheric research aircraft. “The aircraft from UK specialises in atmospheric observations and will be used extensively for this campaign to understand monsoon,” said M. Rajeevan, secretary, ministry of earth sciences said in an interview.

“New data from these observations will eventually help us improve weather and climate models, and hence monsoon forecast,” Rajeevan added.

This large-scale observational campaign is part of UK-India research projects that were announced in 2014 which aimed to bring Indian and UK scientists together to improve forecasts of the South Asian monsoon, including the potential impacts of climate change.

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