Rocket fired in dry zone, cloud seeding to bring in rain
In Nashik a rocket has been finally fired succesfully and it’s only a fortnight’s wait before the flares are shot in succession into the sky to make it rain.
After two failed attempts earlier this month, a rocket was successfully fired for cloud seeding demonstrations on Saturday at the drought-hit Saigaon village of Yeola taluka by Mumbai-based International School of Professional Studies (ISPS). The officials fired one rocket for testing through the clouds by using sugar as fuel.
The rockets are aimed at cloud seeding by using silver iodide in the rain-bearing clouds, resulting in the showers. A bunch of rockets has to be fired within minutes, aiming at the eye of the clouds to yield the precipitation reaction to induce rainfall. And once the rockets are fired, rain is expected within 50 minutes.
The technology – much cheaper than using aeroplanes for the job – is aimed at hitting the yellow spot of the clouds from the ground anywhere between 4 and 10 km from the surface. It has a success ratio of 80% as against 40% ratio in the aeroplane-driven technology.
Abdul Rahman Vanoo, a trustee of the organisation, said the team members had camped at the sight from Friday evening. “The aim was to identify the right place and position before firing the rockets. Besides, the weather conditions had to be studied to ensure the maximum chances of success,” he added.
Of the three rockets kept in store, only one was fired on Saturday. The remaining two were kept grounded as the weather conditions did not improve.
Vanoo said the rocket that was fired reached the required altitude and went in the direction of the targeted cloud. “This is an achievement for the team. Its members will return around August 25 to continue with the efforts and bring in rain in the region,” he added.
Nashik district and its neighbouring areas have not received the expected amount of rainfall this year. With over 2.5 months of the rainy season already gone, the total storage in the dams is at present pegged at 34%. The district has received 39% of the total rainfall of the season so far.