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IMD to Establish India’s First Thunderstorm Research Testbed at Balasore, Odisha

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Odisha’s Balasore to get country’s first thunderstorm research testbedThe India Meteorological Department (IMD) is set to establish India’s first thunderstorm research testbeds at Balasore, Odisha. The testbed will be established in collaboration between the Ministry of Earth Science, IMD, Defence Research and Development Organisation(DRDO) and Indian Space Research Organisation(ISRO).

Thunderstorm Testbed in Balasore:


To reduce the human fatalities and loss of properties due to lightning strikes in Odisha and Eastern States.


  • Dr Mrutyunjay Mohapatra, the ‘Cyclone Man of India’ noted that every year between April and June numerous lives are lost due to lightning strikes in Odisha,West Bengal, Bihar and Jharkhand.
  • Every year, on average around 350 people are killed on an average lightning strike in Odisha.
  • Odisha has lost around 3218 lives due to lightning strikes in nine years till 2019-2020 and in 2016-17 ~ 400 lives were lost and in 2017-18 ~ 470 lives were lost and in 2018-19, 334 lives were lost.


i.The research unit will be equipped with augmented observational systems like radar, wind profiler, microwave radiometer.

ii.The automatic weather stations to study Nor’wester thunderstorms will be installed in north Odisha, West Bengal, Jharkhand and Bihar.

iii.The advanced observational system will be installed in north Odisha, West Bengal and Jharkhand.

iv.Academic institutes like IIT Bhubaneswar and Kharagpur; Fakir Mohan University; NIT Rourkela; Maharaja Sriram Chandra Bhanja Deo University, Baripada; University of Calcutta and Birla Institute of Technology, Ranchi will conduct research on the data shared by the test beds.

Key Points:

i.IMD Director-General Dr Mrutyunjay Mohapatra has also announced that the first of its kind monsoon testbed is also being planned near Bhopal.

ii.Both thunderstorm research testbeds and monsoon testbeds are in the planning stage and the detailed reports of these projects are being made.

Recent Related News:

On December 19-20, 2020, Union Defence Minister, Rajnath Singh inaugurated India’s first advanced Hypersonic Wind Tunnel (HWT) test facility in Hyderabad, Telangana during his visit Defence Research and Development Organisation’s (DRDO’s) Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Missile Complex.

About Ministry of Earth Sciences:
Union Minister– Dr. Harsh Vardhan

About IMD:
Director-General– Dr. Mrutyunjay Mohapatra
Headquarters- New Delhi, Delhi