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What is RAPID that Space Applications Centre (SAC), ISRO, Ahmedabad d...

  Oct 20, 2016

What is RAPID that Space Applications Centre (SAC), ISRO, Ahmedabad developed? How is it a technological advance in the context of India?

Space Applications Centre (SAC), ISRO, Ahmedabad has developed a weather data explorer application - Real Time Analysis of Products and Information Dissemination (RAPID) which is hosted in India Meteorological Department (IMD) website. This software acts as a gateway to Indian Weather Satellite Data providing quick interactive visualisation and 4-Dimensional analysis capabilities to various users like application scientists, forecasters, and the common man.
 
The INSAT series of satellites carrying Very High Resolution Radiometer (VHRR) have been providing data for generating cloud motion vectors, cloud top temperature, water vapour content, etc., facilitating rainfall estimation, weather forecasting, genesis of cyclones and their track prediction. These satellites have also carried Data Relay Transponders (DRT) to facilitate reception and dissemination of meteorological data from in-situ instruments located across vast and inaccessible areas. Currently, there are three meteorological satellites Kalpana-1, INSAT-3A and INSAT-3D in the geosynchronous orbit. Quick visualisation and analysis of data and products enable accurate weather assessments.
 
This innovative application introduces the concept of next generation weather data access and advanced visualisation capabilities. It provides access to the previous 7-day satellite data including images and geophysical parameters from Indian Satellites in near real time. More than 150 Products from Indian Weather Satellites are being hosted using this application. The scientific products which affect our daily lives like Fog, Rainfall, Snow, Temperature, etc., retrieved from INSAT-3D and Kalpana-1 are made available for the common man. It also provides animation of images based on start/end time. This feature is very useful in visualising the movement of severe weather events like cyclones.
 
RAPID also provides support for overlaying the ground observation data from Automatic Weather Stations (AWS) of ISRO and Global Telecommunication System (GTS). These AWS measures the parameters like Temperature, Rainfall, Sunshine, Wind Direction/ Speed and Humidity. The latest addition to RAPID is 'Nowcast Data', which provides the forecast for next 3 hours prediction of the convective cells development and possible areas of thunderstorm.
 
RAPID hosts data from Indian Geostationary Meteorological Satellite Missions in Geo-graphical Information System (GIS) environment in the country. RAPID is also acting as a hub for satellite data and scientific products and used for scientific studies and help students, researchers and organisations to understand the atmospheric phenomenon.