Panaji: The western coast of India will soon get four more doppler weather radars with one each in Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Ratnagiri and Mangaluru, said director general of meteorology, KJ Ramesh, on Tuesday. The radars are expected to give a complete coverage of the coast and also act as a backup to the existing radars.
“Doppler weather radars are effective in predictions upto 250 km and upto 500km in case of disaster prediction. More radars will mean better coverage. It will enhance our forecast capacity in predicting thunderstorms and cyclones more effectively in the region, especially during the pre-monsoon season,” Ramesh said.
Secretary, ministry of earth sciences, M Rajeevan, said rainfall in the region between Goa and Mangaluru is one of the heaviest in the country and necessitates better weather monitoring. “Rainfall of 20cm is quite normal in the region during the monsoon season,” Rajeevan said.
The officials were in Goa on Tuesday to officially inaugurate the country’s 22nd doppler weather radar at the Indian Metereology Department (IMD) in Altinho, Panaji, which is already operational.
Rajeevan said at present, there are 27 weather radars in the country and plans are afoot to set up another 19 by 2019-20.
“Nine weather radars will be set up in the plains, including four in the western coast and 10 in Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand regions, which are prone to storms,” he said.
Threats from climate change and increase in severe weather phenomenon have necessitated closer weather monitoring, said Ramesh.
He said the last 12 dopplers were procured at a cost of Rs 8.5 crore each in 2010 and the cost is likely to have escalated since. “You also require another Rs 3 crore or so for the building, which has to be at least a four-storied one to house the radar,” said Ramesh.
Simultaneous monitoring will be done by satellites and doppler radar network, he said.
The Indian Navy and Air Force also share their weather data with IMD. “Before the doppler radar being set up in Goa, there was a huge gap in the western region between Mumbai and Trivandrum. With the one in Goa being operational, including one at Kochi, this gap has been filled,” said IMD Goa director ML Sahu. [TOI]