ABU DHABI, 20th June, 2016 (WAM)–The UAE Research Programme for Rain Enhancement Science has been on a research collaboration trip to Japan and China, in order to meet with eminent scientists and researchers in many scientific fields related to rain enhancement science, introducing them to the programme and its goals, and the aspirations of the UAE leadership and government in finding new and innovative solutions to increase rainfall.

This ambitious programme supports the water pillar, one of the seven pillars of the UAE Innovation Strategy launched in early 2015.

Commenting on the visits, Dr. Abdullah Mandoos, director of NCMS said, “The international research cooperation trips are of great importance to the UAE Research Programme for Rain Enhancement Science, which attracted a significant worldwide interest with the participation of researchers representing 45 countries from all over the world at its second edition, which addressed one of the most important scientific fields and the biggest issues of concern to humanity today, water security.

“Through these visits, we are seeking close research cooperation with top scientists around the world, urging them to participate in our next edition. We believe that Japan, China and the wider Eastern Asia region are among leading regions worldwide in scientific research, particularly in meteorological research and atmospheric studies, and we expect to receive many innovative and distinguished researches from scientists and researchers in this part of the world.”

During the trip, the delegation interacted with 17 governmental and research entities, and universities. They met with over 74 scientists and researchers in different scientific fields related to rain enhancement, such as physics, atmosphere and cloud physics, earth sciences, geology, and numeric modeling, among others.

The meetings included a presentation on the UAE Research Programme for Rain Enhancement Science given by Alya Al Mazrouei, Programme Manager and Mohammed Al Muhairi, Head of Media and Marketing at the National Centre of Meteorology and Seismology, and also a presentation on cloud seeding operations in the UAE given by Sufian Farrah, Meteorologist and Cloud Seeding Expert at the Centre.

In Japan, the delegation visited some of the most prominent scientific and research organizations, such as the Japan Meteorological Agency, the National Research Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Resilience, the Asian Association for Geology, and the Nagoya University.

Delegation members also interacted with researchers from the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Research Institute for Global Change, the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology, and Diamond Air Service. Moreover, delegation members held several meetings with professor Masataka Murakami, the grantee of the program’s first edition, and were introduced to his research team and colleagues at Nagoya University and the Meteorological Agency. The delegation also toured the scientific laboratories where the professor works, to learn more about the progress of his research project.

Professor Masataka Murakami, Professor at Nagoya University and Visiting Scientist at MRI said, “The demand for fresh water is increasing everywhere, including here in Japan. The country is experiencing regular droughts, serious enough to collect data, encourage experiments and promote innovation in the field of rain enhancement. Thanks to the fruitful collaboration between Japan’s Meteorological Research Institute and the UAE Research Programme for Rain Enhancement Science, we are bringing scientists and technologists together, to better address water security issues globally”.

Furthermore, Professor Teruyuki Nakajima, Director of the Earth Observation Research Center (EORC), Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA)” said, “The UAE Research Program for Rain Enhancement Science is an innovative initiative that opens the door for many researchers and scientists coming from various scientific backgrounds to contribute in the field of rain enhancement, where new ideas that have not been presented before are given a chance to contribute with practical solutions to this important field. The Programme does this through opening new avenues for research funding or collaboration between different institutions and scientific fields across the globe, in order to achieve solutions to the issue of water scarcity. We look forward to potential collaboration between JAXA and the Program in the future through the many scientific and technological fields we are working in at the Agency, in particular the field of satellite remote sensing of cloud and precipitation and their validation experiments.”

In China, the programme’s delegation visited some of the most important universities, institutes, and scientific organizations, including the China Meteorological Administration, the Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences, the Weather Modification Centre, the National Satellite Meteorological Centre, the China Meteorological Administration’s training center, the Public Weather Service Centre, Beijing University, Tsinghua University, and Nanjing University of Science and Technology.

Dr. Xueliang Guo, Deputy Director of the Chinese Meteorological Administration said: “We are very glad that the delegation could come and visit our center this time. We had a great time exchanging our latest rain enhancement technology with the experts from UAE. Thanks to this visit, we had a clearer understanding about The UAE Research Program for Rain Enhancement Science, and we believe this visit would enhance our friendship and play an important role in our future cooperation.”

Dr. Jeff Junji Cao, Executive President of the Institute of Earth Environment and Director of Key Laboratory of Aerosol Chemistry and Physics at CAS said: “The UAE Research Program for Rain Enhancement Science is a very important effort that aims to address water scarcity issues facing many countries around the world. Through this program, innovative research projects that hold fundamental science concepts can get funded, and would have the potential to enrich the field of rain enhancement with additional knowledge coving a wide scope of scientific topics. The focus and variety of the program is impressive, and we hold great interest in it and look forward to participate in the upcoming cycle.”

The UAE Research Program for Rain Enhancement Science is expected to conduct more international research collaboration trips at later times this year. The delegation will visit a number of European countries, as well as the USA, to discuss research collaboration opportunities and encourage the most prominent scientists and researchers in these countries to participate.