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UAE has early recognised importance of rain enhancement research

Dr. Abdullah Ahmed Al Mandoos, Director of the National Centre for Meteorology, NCM, has highlighted the UAE’s keenness to discover ways of ensuring the security of its water resources, which is a challenge faced by many countries. United Nations reports, he said, predict that nearly half of the world’s population will face significant levels of water scarcity by 2030. Al Mandoos said, "The UAE, thanks to its wise leadership, has realised since the 1990s, that our country - one of the most water scarce countries around the world - can benefit from the potential of rain enhancement research. However, the Ministry of Presidential Affairs has begun collaborating with leading research institutes around the world to explore ways to ensure water security.

He added that the UAE, after three decades of intensive efforts in the field of cloud inoculation, has shown what the world can achieve based on its vision, determination and innovative system of rapid development through the UAE Research Programme for Rain Enhancement Science, which has achieved a global reputation since its inception."

Al Mandoos noted that since the launch of the programme in 2015, under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, a financial grant was granted to the best research on rain enhancement by hundreds of engineers and scholars from around the world. During every edition of the programme, three projects were chosen to receive the grant.

The NCM Director explained that the programme currently manages three editions of research projects that acquired the grants, which includes nine rain enhancement research projects. The projects include the development of new cloud-absorbing materials and the use of drones in cloud-based seeding operations, aim to gain a deeper understanding of atmospheric chemistry and physics related to precipitation and rainmaking, he said.

Al Mandoos stressed that the nine projects aim to improve the accuracy of weather forecasts through a unified model, which will be developed by the Khalifa University of Science and Technology and completed by 2020.

He noted that Khalifa University is hosting a research platform related to weather research and weather forecasts, and its researchers are assessing a model that examines the effects of aerosol particles on cloud accumulations and the role of terrain in the formation of various types of clouds.

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