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UAE Research Program for Rain Enhancement Science kicks off visit of its US based awardees

A delegation of the United Arab Emirates Research Program for Rain Enhancement Science visited the United States recently to assess the progress of the ground-breaking work currently being undertaken by UAEREP awardees Eric Frew and Paul Lawson.

Prof Eric Frew introduced the UAEREP team to the key members of his project at the Aerospace Department of Colorado University and discussed preparations for their next research objectives in the coming months. The University members praised the Program for its contribution to international collaboration and capacity building in the UAE and beyond.

The UAE team also toured the facilities of Droplet Measurement Technologies, a key component of Prof Frew’s project. Duncan Axisa, its ‎Director of Business Development presented some cutting-edge instruments and latest innovations of the company to better understand cloud microphysics and to ensure accuracy in measurements, and highlighted the importance of unmanned systems to improve the rain enhancement measurements as well as operations. He also commented on the role of artificial intelligence in meteorology, and what this new technology could bring to the field.

As for Dr Lawson, the team was updated on the weather measurement devices that will installed on the Spec Incorporated Learjet research aircraft. The aircraft will travel halfway around the planet, from Boulder, Colorado to Abu Dhabi, to conduct cutting edge experiments over the UAE in July.

His Excellency Dr Abdulla Al Mandous, Director of the NCM, said: “Our visit to Boulder is part of our commitment to ensure that our awardees receive the maximum support and provision of collaborative expertise for their ongoing projects. In working closely with our awardees, we are helping to fulfil our mission to advance global rain enhancement capacity and expertise.”

Following its Boulder meetings, the UAEREP team went on to visit the University of Chicago’s internationally-renowned Department of Geophysical Sciences to discuss ways of improving its worldwide outreach efforts with senior scientists and researchers in the department.

Reflecting its status as a leader in science and technology, the UAEREP team then held high-level meetings at the World Water Forum in Brasilia.

The UAE Research Program for Rain Enhancement Science delegation then concluded its roadshow in the Americas with a highly successful and productive participation at the 8th edition of the World Water Forum in Brazil.

HE added: “Through our engagement at this 8th edition of the World Water Forum, the UAE Research Program for Rain Enhancement Science has helped to raise awareness of the threat of water stress and the potential of new innovations in this domain”.

Organized every three years by the World Water Council (WWC), the World Water Forum gathers policymakers, scientists, private sector and civil society organizations. It is the world’s biggest water-related event, serving a mission to bring together global leaders and stakeholders to raise international awareness of water-related issues and advocate specific policies and actions to better conserve and manage this vital resource. This year’s meeting in Brasilia convened more than 10 Heads of State and 100 Ministers from all over the World and was the first time the Forum has been held in the Southern Hemisphere.

Over the week, the UAEREP team met with the National Water Agency of Brazil, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the American Water Resources Association, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the World Resources Institute, and the organization team of the World Water Forum 9, to be held in Dakar in 2021, among others. Over two weeks, the UAEREP will have met in total with 75 stakeholders, from 30 institutions.

Launched by the Ministry of Presidential Affairs of the UAE, and managed by the National Center of Meteorology, the UAE Research Program for Rain Enhancement Science has already attained a leading global position through effective international cooperation and advanced scientific and technical research projects covering all aspects of water security. Offering a grant of 5 million US dollars for each cycle to be shared by up to five winning research proposals, the UAE Research Program for Rain Enhancement Science has already generated extensive interest among leading scientists and technologists around the world. Since its inception, the Program has built a global network with more than 1200 researchers from over 500 prestigious institutions around the world.


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