Introduction


The Blanket Effect is intended for others to learn about weather modification and its related subjects in an easy to understand way. Started in 2005, this blog is a work in progress as the technology advances

December 11, 2006

Nevada Weather Modification 2006 Operations

(note: The following information is primarily from Weather Modification Inc., with the Nevada State Cloud Seeding Program's pictures and graphs)

Cloud seeding has been conducted in the Tahoe area since the 1960's. The original seeding equipment was acquired mainly through U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (USBR) grants to DRI (e.g., Pyramid Lake Project).

The Ruby Mountain operation started in 1981 using surplus USBR generators.

State funding for the program began as early as 1979-80, and continuous State funding has been available since 1984.

Four remotely-controlled generators and two weather stations were added in 1992 through a special USBR grant ($300,000).

The Desert Research Institute has designed and operated the Nevada State program since its inception.

Project Area

The project area covers the basins of Lake Tahoe, the Truckee River, the Carson River, the Walker River, the Upper Humboldt River (Ruby Mountains), the South Fork of the Owyhee River (Tuscarora Mountains), and the Reese River (Toiyabe Mountains). WMI performs flight operations in the Tahoo-Truckee, Walker, and Carson Basins.(map at right Walker Carson Project Area Map)

Tahoe & Truckee Basins
Winter 2006 - 2007 Operations
Seeding Type First Operation Most Recent Operation Number of Operations to Date Total Seeding Hours to Date Percent of Normal Snowpack as of
12/04/2006
Ground 11/11/06 11/26/06 2 103
Tahoe: 20%
Truckee: 37%
Aircraft not started no ops 0 0


Winter 2006 - 2007 Operations














Seeding Type First Operation Most Recent Operation Number of Operations to Date Total Seeding Hours to Date Percent of Normal Snowpack as of
12/04/2006
Ground 11/11/06 11/26/06 2 27
Walker: 21%
Carson: 14%
Aircraft not started no ops 0 0

Tuscarora Mountains (Owyhee Basin)
Winter 2006 - 2007 Operations
Seeding Type First Operation Most Recent Operation Number of Operations to Date Total Seeding Hours to Date Percent of Normal Snowpack as of
12/04/2006
Ground 11/9/06 11/28/06 3 69 38%

(all charts from Nevada State Cloud Seeding Program website)

Project Information

METHOD OF OPERATION:
Primarily, ground-based generators are used to burn a solution of silver iodide-sodium iodide and salt in acetone to release silver chloro-iodide particles which create additional ice crystals, then snow, in winter clouds.

Weather conditions are selected to optimize fallout in targeted basins.

All generators are remotely operated by radio or cellular telephone.

A seeding aircraft is at times used to augment ground seeding operations. The aircraft releases AgI from pyrotechnic flares or solution burners.

Dry ice is also used in airport fog clearing operations. (map at above right of Tahoe-Truckee Target Area)

Seeding Equipment:


» Nineteen (19) remotely controlled AgI generators.
» One (1) Cessna 340 aircraft outfitted with ejectable flare racks, BIP flare racks, and a dry ice hopper.

Supporting Equipment:

Weather stations on at least one seeding generator in each targeted basin. DRI/NWS hydro-meteorological network in the Tahoe area - access to RAWS, SNOTEL and other meteorological data networks through the DRI Western Regional Climate Center - NEXRAD radar and GOES satellite imagery - the DRI trace chemistry laboratory - DRI microwave radiometers for sensing cloud liquid water - an NCAR ice nucleus counter for detecting AgI plumes - laser imaging probes for measuring cloud particles.

Supporting Personnel:

Three full time technicians who install and maintain all generator networks and fabricate new generators - two part time professionals who forecast seeding operations, implement design changes, evaluate operations, monitor environmental aspects of the program and evaluate seeding effectiveness.

Ruby Mountains (Upper Humboldt Basin)
Winter 2006 - 2007 Operations

Seeding Type First Operation Most Recent Operation Number of Operations to Date Total Seeding Hours to Date Percent of Normal Snowpack as of
12/04/2006
Ground 11/9/06 11/28/06 3 67 57%


(image right: Ruby Ridge Project Area Map)




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