Artificial Rain To Combat The Problem Of Smog

Artificial rain or increased rain is the one that is produced by inflating clouds artificially with ‘dry ice’ (frozen carbon dioxide), silver iodide, or other appropriate particles, which act as condensation nuclei.According to the clouds’ differential physical properties, this can be done using airplanes or rockets to sow to the clouds with catalysts such as dry ice, silver iodide and salt powder, to make clouds rain and increase precipitation in order to increase water supply for essential purposes.

The process of artificial rain includes three stages, the first is agitation, the second is called building-up stage and the third is a bombardment of chemicals. This process involves using chemicals to stimulate the air mass upwind of the target area to rise and form rain clouds. These clouds are capable of absorbing water vapor from the air mass thereby leading to stimulation of the condensation process in the clouds.

During the second stage, the cloud mass is built up using chemicals like kitchen salt, ammonium nitrate and occasionally calcium chloride. Then during the third stage, chemicals such as super cool agents like silver iodide and dry ice are used to reach the most unbalanced status which eventually leads to the formulation of droplets and make them fall as raindrops.

There are various reasons for the government to opt for cloud seeding. These can be to alter the level of rainfall, enhance irrigation facilities for farmers, fight draughts, generate hydroelectricity and prevent pollution.

The one such problem that our country faces is SMOG. And we have heard government planning to opt for artificial rainfall. Thus, Smog is a type of severe air pollution. The word “smog” was coined in the early 20th century as a blending of the words-smoke and fog to refer to smoky fog, its opacity, and odor.

Smog is a serious problem in many cities and continues to harm human health. Ground-level ozone, sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide and carbon monoxide are especially harmful for senior citizens, children, and people with heart and lung conditions such as emphysema, bronchitis, and asthma. It can inflame breathing passages, decrease the lungs’ working capacity, cause shortness of breath, pain when inhaling deeply, wheezing, and coughing.

For the past few years, cities in northern India have been covered in a thick layer of winter smog. The situation has turned quite drastic in the National Capital, Delhi. This smog is caused by the collection of Particulate Matter (a very fine type of dust and toxic gases) in the air due to stagnant movement of air during winters.

Delhi is the most polluted] city in the world and according to one estimate, air pollution causes the death of about 10,500 people in Delhi every year.

The major causes for this is especially due to stubble burning, rise in market share of diesel cars and a considerable decline in bus ridership. According to CUE and System of Air Quality Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFER), burning of agricultural waste in nearby Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh regions results in severe intensification of smog over Delhi. The state government of adjoining Uttar Pradesh is considering imposing a ban on crop burning to reduce pollution in Delhi NCR and an environmental panel has appealed to India’s Supreme Court to impose a 30% cess on diesel cars.

The recent step towards induced rainfall will be a boon or a bane for the country cannot be estimated but it can be hoped to be a sincere step towards a healthy Delhi.

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