Feeds

Chinese make Olympic weather bow to Party's will

Rain-prevention experiments 'satisfactory', claims Beijing

Business security measures using SSL

Chinese officials have announced that the Beijing Meteorological Bureau has successfully carried out experiments aimed at preventing light rain from washing out the opening ceremony of the 2008 Olympics on 8 August.

The problem for the games' organisers is that the showpiece Bird's Nest stadium which will host the gala is an open-air affair, Reuters explains. Accordingly, the bureau was tasked with tackling the precipitation issue. The bureau's splendidly-titled "head of weather manipulation", Zhang Qian, told a press conference: "Our experiments with rain mitigation have been aimed at light rain. With heavy rain it is more difficult.* The results with light rain have been satisfactory."

She elaborated: "For cold clouds below zero degrees (Celcius), we use a coolant made from liquid nitrogen to increase the number of droplets while decreasing their mean size. As a result, the smaller droplets are less likely to fall and precipitation can be reduced.

"For clouds above zero degrees we use the seeding agent silver iodide to accelerate the droplets' collision and coalescence, producing a downdraft which suppresses the formation of clouds."

China may also use tried-and-trusted cloud-seeding methods to induce the rain to fall before it reaches the stadium, according to Wang Yubin, deputy chief engineer at the bureau. It's also hard at work gearing up for the pre-games ascent of the Olympic torch to the peak of Mount Everest, and Wang assured: "We will have very detailed forecasts. We will be able to tell the organizers: the winds are too strong, you cannot do it on this day, or, you can do it on this day." ®

Bootnote

*Yes, we know. A nice way of saying "if it chucks it down, you're going to take a soaking, matey".

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
PORTAL TO ELSEWHERE scried in small galaxy far, far away
Supermassive black hole dominates titchy star formation
Boffins say they've got Lithium batteries the wrong way around
Surprises at the nano-scale mean our ideas about how they charge could be all wrong
Bacon-related medical breakthrough wins Ig Nobel prize
Is there ANYTHING cured pork can't do?
Edge Research Lab to tackle chilly LOHAN's final test flight
Our US allies to probe potential Vulture 2 servo freeze
Europe prepares to INVADE comet: Rosetta landing site chosen
No word yet on whether backup site is labelled 'K'
Cracked it - Vulture 2 power podule fires servos for 4 HOURS
Pixhawk avionics juice issue sorted, onwards to Spaceport America
'Duck face' selfie in SPAAAACE: Rosetta's snap with bird comet
Probe prepares to make first landing on fast-moving rock
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.