THE govt has signed Rs 27 cr contract with Swedish firm for 100 hrs
Mumbai : The government is all set to carry out a cloud seeding experiment next month at Aurangabad. The government has signed a contract with Swedish Company for cloud seeding by spending Rs 27 crore and the contract will be for 100 hours.
The cloud seeding project came up for discussion during the review meeting on the agrarian crisis. There are 175 talukas out of 355 in Maharashtra that are drought-hit. The government had a plan to do artificial raining and it is finalise now.
Relief and rehabilitation minister Eknath Khadse said that the procedure is almost completed and the company is trying to get permissions from the aviation department and also from defense ministry.
“The contract with the Swedish company is for 100 hours and the company will conduct the experiment for 100 hours in August and September. Final dates will be decide on 28 or 29 July,” he said.
“We have been approached by specialists in the field of cloud seeding who claim that they are able to generate showers by using sugar-propelled rockets. We have asked them to give us a demonstration. If it is successful, we will adopt this technology,” said Khadse.
Navi Mumbai-based International School of Professional Studies (ISPS) already given a presentation to the government after the presentation the government agreed for the experiment. The ISPS had earlier successfully tested the rocket at Sindhudurg and Sangli.
According to an official from Mantralaya Silver iodide of 47 per cent purity is required for this process. This can be sourced only from Argentina. The chemical will be spread on humid cloud through rocket launcher. Elaborating the rocket’s functioning the officer said, “It has a metallic body with a length of above 2 metres, depending upon the height of the cloud. The rocket is equipped with a GPS system, a parachute for safe landing after its bursts, sodium iodide — which is to be sprayed on the cloud — and molten sugar as fuel.”
It takes 3 seconds to reach a cloud at a height of 2 km, after which it bursts as it was programmed to. When it bursts, there is a chemical reaction between sodium iodide and the moisture in the cloud, which results in raining within 40-60 minutes. The same technology is patented and it is being used in Israel.