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Fri 3 Feb 2017 11:03 AM

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UAE awards US, UK, Finnish scientists $5m grant for rain enhancement

UAE Research Program for Rain Enhancement Science is part of plan to tackle water security challenges

UAE awards US, UK, Finnish scientists $5m grant for rain enhancement

Scientists from the US, Finland and UK have been awarded grants in the second cycle of the UAE Research Program for Rain Enhancement Science, it has been announced.

The research groups were selected as awardees of the $5 million grant following on from the first cycle when scientists from Japan, the UAE and Germany were funded.

Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs of the UAE, said: “The United Arab Emirates is playing an active role in driving research in science and technology to identify solutions to tackle global water security challenges. This comes in support of the ambitious innovation and energy strategies of our country.”

He added: “This cutting-edge research could make a real difference for countries suffering from droughts across the world."

The three scientists leading the research teams that will share the $5 million include Paul Lawson, from the United States, for his work on investigating new approaches to rain enhancement that leverages ice production processes in cumulus clouds. 

Also receiving funds are groups led by Finnish professor Hannele Korhonenfor her work on the role of atmospheric aerosols in efficient precipitation enhancement and British professor Giles Harrison for his work on the electrical properties of clouds and on rainfall modeling.

The three proposals were selected from 91 global scientific research proposals, a statement said.

Launched by the Ministry of Presidential Affairs of the UAE in early 2015 and managed by the UAE National Centre of Meteorology and Seismology (NCMS), the UAE Research Program for Rain Enhancement Science is an ambitious global initiative designed to stimulate rain enhancement research.

The program seeks to address water security challenges through international cooperation to advance scientific and technical research and innovation.

Registrations are currently open for the third cycle of grants and proposals must be submitted by August 17.

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