Govt. Planning to Set up Centre of Excellence at IIT Kharagpur and IISc Bangalore for training students to track weather events

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The Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES) is planning to set up new Centres of Excellence (CEC) for teaching to develop software and algorithms that will be needed to track weather events.

M. Rajeevan, secretary, MoES recently informed in Pune that the first CEC will be established soon at IIT-Kharagpur campus and similar CEC will be introduced soon after the first one starts to function.

“We have received a proposal from IIT Kharagpur and our team will be visiting the institute later this month to finalize the setting up of CEC, a similar proposal from IISc could be expected shortly,” said Rajeevan.

This idea of setting up of CEC got its origin from the massive dust storm that hit Delhi and Haryana last year, killing over 200 people. Rajeevan emphasized this event as an ‘eye-opener’ to introduce such CEC in order to create software and algorithms to track weather events.

“The CECs will undertake training for researchers and students, to develop hardware, software, and algorithms. These will help track thunder, lightning, wind speed or similar weather phenomenon specifically, helping improve operational forecasts,” said Rajeevan.

This movement established by MoES is among the recent initiatives taken by the Ministry to develop human resources in the field of atmospheric sciences, both for operational and research purposes.

The Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM) will soon be introducing fellowships and short-term courses, workshops under their Development of Skilled manpower in Earth System Sciences (DESK) by the next academic year. Similarly, oceanic studies will be conducted at the Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS).

With enormous data getting generated, we will need to engage more students and researchers, and we will need to adopt newer type of scanning methods. This will be particularly needed to address some of the challenges posed by the country,” said K J Ramesh, director general of the India Meteorological Department.

“The application of radar data is immense and now this data has been made available for researchers and students,” said Rajeevan.

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