A team of scientists from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is trying to improve rainfall in this dry country by discharging electricity into the clouds using new drone technology, known as “cloud seeding.”
Thus, the National Meteorological Center for Emirati operations carried out a seeding of clouds to increase rainfall. First, they issued meteorological alerts for the east of the country due to the possibility of convective cloud formations ( which cause precipitation and winds with speeds of 40 km / h and are formed due to the high temperatures that make the warm and humid air rise cooler surrounding air present in the atmosphere).
Cloud seeding to solve the freshwater problem
Rain production, also known as artificial precipitation, artificial rain, or pluviculture , is the deliberate production or increase of precipitation to minimize drought or global warming. Although it sounds like science fiction, research on cloud seeding dates back to the 1940s; however, only in recent years has the technology proven effective.
To do this, the drones released an electrical charge into the clouds, causing them to merge and generate rain. According to the UAE National Meteorology Center, the technology is favored compared to other forms of cloud seeding because it uses electricity to generate rain rather than chemicals.
As this Middle Eastern country receives very little rainfall per year and summer temperatures that typically exceed 47 or 48 ° C, the government has invested a total of $ 15 million in nine projects since 2017 in hopes of increasing rainfall in the region. Be that as it may , it is important to note that while cloud seeding can be beneficial, it will not address the root causes of drought nor is it a foolproof method for this problem.
Why use cloud seeding?
There are many reasons to use cloud seeding. Ski resorts use this technology to increase snowfall. Hydro companies do too, because more snow means more runoff in the spring. And more runoff means more water for electricity. Cloud seeding can also clear fog by turning it into precipitation. This can help improve visibility around airports, for example.