Science # Weather & Climate

Nyda’s giant ice balls

Giant ice balls covered the coast along the Gulf of Ob, an arm of the Kara Sea in north-western Siberia  a little over a week ago. The phenomenon was noticed in the small village of Nyda, which lies on the Yamal Peninsula just above the Arctic Circle. The icy spheres ranged from the size of a tennis ball to almost 3 feet across, covering 18 km of the coast. Locals in Nyda say they have never seen anything comparable in the past. However, this is not the first time this winter phenomenon...

Weather & Climate

Measure Rainfall at Home

Monsoons are associated with mushy and wet days, loads of hot pakoras, jalebis, samosas, rainy day holidays and much more. But, apart from fun days, take advantage of-the season to do some serious research. Your results could perhaps rival that of the meteorological department! Want to take up the challenge? Read on to know what you can do. At first, you will need to measure a whole month's rainfall amount. How do you do that? Well, your school textbooks might have already listed the items, but then,...

Weather & Climate

Want to be an Ace Cloud Reporter

Staring up at the blue skies how often have you imagined funny floating shapes in the clouds. Has the dark grey menacing clouds ever affected your moods. Well, clouds come in millions of many shapes and sizes, from little powder puffs dotting the blue skies to the deepest of greys. If you are asked to identify these clouds you probably would want to know what they are named and how they are coded by the meteorological departments world over. But, why do we need to code clouds at all? By understanding...

Weather & Climate

Lightning Hazard

Lightning is perhaps one of the most beautiful, and at the same time, one of the most frightening phenomena in nature. While it is terrifying, and could be fatal when it happens at close quarters, its beauty from a distance is often breath-taking. Thomas-François Dalibard (1709-1778), a French scientist, in May 1772 established that lightning contains electricity, based on an experiment originally suggested by the famous American polymath Benjamin Franklin. The experiment consisted of raising...

Weather & Climate | VOL. 16, ISSUE 96, May-June 2016

Stalagmites Reveal Past Drought Records

Studying stalagmites and their deposits can reveal the frequency and magnitude of dry and wet seasons in the past. Such studies can help predict climate uncertainties.

Weather & Climate | VOL. 16, ISSUE 96, May-June 2016

Study claims early forecast of Indian monsoon

A study at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), Germany claims the Indian monsoon’s yearly onset and withdrawal can now be forecasted significantly earlier than previously possible. A team of scientists, V Stolbova, E Surovyatkina, B Bookhagen and I Kurths, developed a novel prediction method based on a network analysis of regional weather data. Future climate change will likely affect monsoon stability and hence makes accurate forecasting even more relevant. ‘We can predict...

Weather & Climate | VOL. 16, ISSUE 96, May-June 2016

Precipitation in the Himalayas

The western Himalayan region experienced an increasing trend of one-day heaviest precipitation, during both winter and monsoon through 1978 to 2007. While one day heaviest precipitation is on the rise in high-altitude stations during winter, the same is observed in low altitude stations during the monsoon.

Weather & Climate

Weak Monsoon Conditions prevail over most parts of the country

New Delhi, July 16 (G’nY News Service): As rain mercilessly lashes the northern region of the country, the southern part is experiencing a comparatively dry spell. Rains are reported only in the state of Andhra Pradesh in the southern peninsula. Dry spells are expected to continue over Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has released a forecast announcing revival of monsoon activities over east and central India after July 18. The IMD and National...

Weather & Climate | VOL. 15, ISSUE 93, November-December 2015


Thunderstorms are localised phenomena that can cause substantial damage. These are classified into the ordinary or single-cell, long-lasting multiple-cell or violent super-cell ones. In India, the pre-monsoon season is when most thunderstorms occur.

Weather & Climate | VOL. 15, ISSUE 93, November-December 2015


A hailstorm is a thunderstorm that produces ice as precipitation. Hailstorms can cause serious damage to crops and property. In India, hailstorms mostly affect the northeast and western Himalayas, with the maximum strikes in March and April.