IIT Kanpur successfully conducts test flight for cloud seeding
The Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur has successfully conducted a test flight for cloud seeding. The project was initiated at IIT Kanpur a few years ago and is headed by Prof. Manindra Agrawal from the Computer Science and Engineering Department. The experiment was conducted with due approval from the DGCA (Directorate General of Civil Aviation).
The test flight went up to an approximate height of 5000 ft. The short flight took off and came back to the IIT Kanpur Flight Lab airstrip, after successfully completing the test ride.
Cloud seeding involves the utilization of various chemical agents such as silver iodide, dry ice, common salt, and other elements with the aim of enhancing the probability of precipitation. In the experiment undertaken by IIT Kanpur, a Cessna aircraft was flown from the Flight Laboratory of IIT Kanpur with cloud seeding attachments.
These attachments were procured from a manufacturer in the US and the modifications in the aircraft were approved both by the manufacturers of Cessna and DGCA. The test flight spread the agents using a flare as is standard practice.
Prof. Manindra Agrawal said that they did not fire the flares into the clouds, it was a trial for the equipment only. The successful test flight implies that we’re now prepared to run a cloud seeding in later stages and make it a success.
He said that IIT Kanpur has been working on this project for a few years now. There was a delay in the procurement processes due to Covid. But now, after the approval from DGCA and the successful completion of the first trial, we are close to completing the setup.