GPS signal effective in forecasting etxreme rainfall, say researchers

Heavy rainfall events can be detected around 5.45 hours to 6.45 hours in advance using delay in Global Positioning System (GPS) signals, according to researchers at the Department of Marine Geology and Geophysics at the Cochin Universtiy of Science and Technology (Cusat).

The research was done by Ms. Rose Mary under the supervision of Dr. Sunil P.S., Associate Professor, Department of Marine Geology and Geophysics, in collaboration with the National Universtiy of Singapore, Space Application Cetnre, India Meteorological department, Airports Authortiy of India, and the Indian Institute of Geomagnetism, according to an official communication.

A rapid increase in atmospheric water vapour is a fundamental factor of natural phenomena such as etxreme rainfall. During rainy season, when GPS signals from satellite pass through the atmosphere and reach GPS receivers on earth, there is usually a delay in GPS signal on the amount of water vapour in the atmosphere before it reaches receivers, it said.

The study, using continuous GPS and rainfall data from Thiruvananthapuram, showed that any heavy rainfall event could be detected in advance using the delay in GPS signals. Nearly eight etxreme rainfall events were studied by the group, including the one that caused the August 2018 floods, according to the communication.

Courtesy- The Hindu

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