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Weather office keeps hopes of good monsoon alive

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FULL OF RAIN: A Dundee satellite image showing dense cloud formation in the Arabian Sea.
FULL OF RAIN: A Dundee satellite image showing dense cloud formation in the Arabian Sea.

R. Krishna Kumar

Satellite images show conditions ideal for good rains

Long-term average based on 40 years data shows rainfall is scarce in July

‘The impact of pleasant weather on monsoon is generally not appreciated’

MYSORE: The southwest monsoon may be playing truant in the State but conditions are perfect for good rains during the ensuing days and the scenario is pretty optimistic for Mysore region if satellite updates are any indication.

Latest satellite images sourced from the Agricultural Research Station at Naganahalli on the outskirts of Mysore indicates a thick cloud formation which was absent in the west coast of India all these days.

As if to vindicate the predictions, Mysore received heavy rain on Tuesday.

Cloud formation

Research associates point out that the cloud formation is spread over a vast area and irrespective of the movement of the wind, chances of heavy precipitation are high which will depend on certain local atmospheric and weather conditions like high temperature, absence of wind and so on.

Meanwhile, the five-day weather prediction indicates heavy rains and thick cloud formation for Mysore, Mandya and Chamarajanagar districts.

These are based on various parameters, including humidity, temperature, moisture, wind speed, all of which are sent to the National Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting, based at NOIDA, Delhi, according to K. Devaraj, a research associate.

The Agricultural Research Station at Naganahalli has been part of the Experimental Agromet Advisory Services sine April 1999 and is networked to the Indian Meteorology Department and NCMR, Noida from where it receives weather bulletins and rainfall pattern updates.

While there is dismay over the weakening of southwest monsoon in this region, weather experts say this is normal and the long-term average based on 40 years data indicates that rainfall is scarce during July.

The average monthly rainfall of 40 years for July in Mysore district is 52.9 mm and the district has so far received only 3.5 mm of rains as on July 15.

But this too is normal and if the 40 mm rains predicted during the next few days materialise then it evens out.

Similarly, the average rains for June is 55.1 mm against which the region received 55.4 mm which is reckoned as normal. But what went unnoticed was that Mysore received 130.3 mm of rainfall in March 2008 which is the highest ever recorded.

“In contrast, the region received nil rainfall in March 2007. As a result of heavy rainfall in March this year, the temperature dipped considerably and there was no sufficient evaporation because of lack of heat nor did humidity build up. So despite the onset of southwest monsoon, the local weather condition is not ideal for precipitation and hence the region is witnessing poor rainfall in July,” said Mr. Devaraj.

While people generally welcome the pleasant and cloudy weather conditions during summer, the impact on monsoon is not appreciated.

The result is either a delay in rains or poor precipitation, according to experts.

Local factors

But all this depends on hosts of local conditions and Mysore region, as most parts of Karnataka, have experienced dry weather so far but there are traces of an early revival of southwest monsoon as indicated by the satellite images.

Experts say the rainfall in the region has a bimodal distribution pattern as per which a peak is followed by two months of trough and hence peak rainfall may be expected in August or September.

While the rains are generally welcome, the post-monsoon rainfall was a failure last year while pre-monsoon too failed this season but for the record rainfall in March.

The long-term average prediction is normal to good rains this season and hence fears of a drought or a dip in the water-level at the Krishnaraja Sagar, is a remote possibility.

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