Met Dept readies new radar system
The Meteorological Services Department is at an advanced stage towards the setting up of a radar network to improve the accuracy of weather information.
Five radars purchased at a cost of US$6,3 million will see the country being able to provide information on tropical cyclones and storms as they happen, as opposed to forecasting.
Presenting at the National Climate Outlook Forum (NACOF) Review 2021/2022 which was done virtually, MSD director, Mrs Rebecca Manzou said the first radar is expected in the country end of March.
“Civil works for all three sites have been completed. The radars will be able to pick events within a short time and can tell cumulative volumes to be expected from storms. The radars should be able to cover the whole country.
“We are grateful that the project was wholly covered by Government. The radars will be situated at the MSD headquarters in Harare, Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo International Airport in Bulawayo, Buffalo Range, Victoria Falls and Kariba airports,” she said.
Mrs Manzou said through their technical and financial partners; World Food Programme and the UNESCO, the Met department was going to install additional automatic weather stations, rain gauges and see the launch of SMS weather updates platform starting with Mudzi district.
“I am also glad to announce that we are now at an advanced stage towards the implementation of the national framework for weather and climate services.
“We were working with a consultant hired under the Zimbabwe Resilience Building Fund who has since completed the National Frameworks for Climate Services strategic and action plans.
“We are now planning to have a validation workshop in this first quarter,” she said.
By using radars, the department will be able to downscale information to four kilometres resolution and we will also be able to have sector specific forecasts which are more accurate.
The software will be able to give us the approximate amount of rain from a cloud or cyclone, which a helpful tool in forecasting.
The software can also provide for television weather presentations and can also be used in aviation.”Herald.