To be a weather scientist in India is a tough job. They forecast the wellbeing of 65 per cent of the country's population every year, rather every hour. `REAL-TIME PREDICTION IS THE CHALLENGE'
Monsoon is the planet's most complex weather system, which makes its prediction difficult. So, since the launch of Monsoon Mission in 2012, our objective has been to improve the prediction systems so that we can consistently provide reliable monsoon forecasts.And we have fairly succeeded in it.
Until recently we had very poor predictive ability. Now, with the influx of technologies for observations and measurements of meteorological parameters, we have a much better sense of present conditions, which is essential for future predictions. We have enhanced the resolution of satellite images by reducing their grid sizes from the standard 100 km2 to 38 km2, keeping in mind the sensitivity and variability of the Indian monsoon.This helps us observe local factors, such as cloud cover, in a much more accurate fashion. Advances in numerical modelling of monsoon have also greatly helped us improve predictability.Soon we will be able to set up a real-time monsoon prediction system.
However, unlike several developed countries,India does not have a weather prediction model of its own. We use an American model,ncep cfs v2.0,developed by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (noaa). To make it suitable for predicting the monsoon, we are reworking some of its parts by feeding in our observations and calculations.We ran the model in January this year. After running it 40 times, we released our monsoon predictions in February, months before other agencies could. We also reforecasted monsoon incidences between 1982 and 2008 to evaluate efficiency of