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Science & Technology

Dubai creates its own rain to beat the heat

July 21, 2021 | Comment icon 12 comments



The rain was extremely heavy in some areas. Image Credit: National Center of Meteorology
The city has taken the weather into its own hands by using drones to stimulate clouds into producing rain.
If you had been driving along the highway in the United Arab Emirates recently, you would have likely run into torrential downpours not dissimilar to those typically seen during a monsoon season.

In a part of the world known for its arid climate and 120F summer heat, however, such a weather phenomenon is highly unusual - and that's because it wasn't supposed to be happening at all.

According to the UAE's National Center of Meteorology, these anomalous downpours were produced by cloud seeding operations designed to increase the amount of rainfall in the region.

To achieve this, special drones were sent up to unleash electrical charges which caused the clouds to clump together and form precipitation that would not have otherwise occurred.
The technique - which was pioneered by scientists at the University of Reading in England - is one of several rain-making solutions that the UAE invested $15 million to develop back in 2017.

Footage of the extreme downpours has since been broadcast on the country's news networks.

There was so much rain, in fact, that it made driving conditions in some areas hazardous.

Whether this will impact the natural weather cycle moving forward however remains unclear.



Source: Independent | Comments (12)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #3 Posted by closed for business 10 months ago
Hi Rashor I don't know but considering the loss of forest and property not to mention lives if a tech is available why not use it? It was just a thought that crossed my mind when I read it.
Comment icon #4 Posted by closed for business 10 months ago
https://www.timeanddate.com/weather/canada/vancouver/historic Past Weather in Vancouver — Graph °C   See Hour-by-hour Forecast for upcoming weather Hi Rashore  I tried to post a graph of how much cloud cover there has been in the last week but the graph wouldn't load so you will have to use the link
Comment icon #5 Posted by rashore 10 months ago
Well, from the sounds of the article, Dubai started the projects a few years ago, and this seems to be the first news story about them using it. So maybe it took a few years to get the technology up and running correctly. Maybe BC wasn't interested in developing the same technology there a few years ago, so they don't have it available right now for the fires. 
Comment icon #6 Posted by closed for business 10 months ago
Hi Rashore  Yes of course and I was just musing not complaining but now that the tech is developed and available I think places like B.C. and California could take advantage of it. I live next door to BC and the smoke is heavy here and last year when the fires were burning in both BC and here the sun was red looking rather than it's usual yellow. Granted I am only speaking in local terms but forest fires happen all over the globe so to me it would seem like one more tool to use.
Comment icon #7 Posted by Essan 10 months ago
Yes, that's the issue:  you can't create rain clouds. All cloud-seeding does is increase the amount of precipitation that pre-existing rain clouds produce.  It's already used widely in the US - main for either hail suppression (basically make it rain before the hail can form) or increasing snowfall for winter resorts. But no rain clouds? Then no technology on Earth will make it rain.
Comment icon #8 Posted by jethrofloyd 10 months ago
Well, the ''fake snow'' machines exists  for a long time. Why not ''fake rain'' as well?
Comment icon #9 Posted by rashore 10 months ago
Fake snow machines use pumped water to make the snow. Like a big pressurized water mister. Seeding clouds is different technology. 
Comment icon #10 Posted by Doug1066 10 months ago
They tried seeding clouds in southwest Colorado back in the early 1970s.  It added about six inches to annual rainfall, but ranchers and farmers downwind complained that they weren't getting their usual amounts of precip.  They shut the program down. Doug
Comment icon #11 Posted by Eldorado 10 months ago
The Scientific American reports that eight US states are currently using the cloud seeding technology. In the Colorado River Basin, cloud seeding operations funded to the tune of $1.5 million annually by a combination of state agencies, utility companies and private companies. States such as Nevada, California, New Mexico and Arizona who also stand to benefit from increased rainfall contribute to the cost. There is evidence that cloud seeding increase rainfall by 10-15%. However, there are drawbacks. Shooting silver iodide into clouds can be toxic to marine life. MSN
Comment icon #12 Posted by Freez1 10 months ago
Great! I’ve been wondering why it’s rained every day all summer here. And here we got China blowing up a dam to try and save people from massive flooding. And yet you wonder why? This technique should be banned world wide if you screw with Mother Nature she will screw you back.


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