Cloud seeding in action
A computer generated image of a pentamer ice chain (red and white) on a plane surface (brown) Pic credit: London Centre for Nanotechnology (LCN)
Rainmaking has advanced since the days when a ritual dance was believed to invoke the wet stuff, but while modern day cloud seeding has been shown to change the structure and size of clouds, it’s still debatable whether the practice actually has any effect on rainfall. After all, even if precipitation does occur after cloud seeding there’s no way of knowing whether it would have rained anyway. This uncertainty hasn’t stopped widespread use of cloud seeding in countries around the world including the US, Russia, Australia and China, which boasts the largest cloud seeding system in the world. Now a breakthrough by an international team of scientists could help in the development of new materials which could be used to enhance the process.
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