Newsletter No.2 April-1998@

Introduction of the Earth Variations Research Institutes in the World (1)

In this Newsletter, we will introduce, in a successive manner, the earth variations research institutes in the world. For the first time, the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology, to which Dr. Swadhin Kumar Behera, a research staff member of the Earth Variations Research Program of the Frontier, once belonged, is introduced by himself.

1.Name and address of the institute:
Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology
Dr. Homi Bhava Road, NCL POST
Pashan, Pune 411008, India

2.Outline of the institute:
The institute was formed in 1966 as a research group named Institute of Tropical Meteorology in the India Meteorological Department, with an aim to improve the conventional meteorological forecast. It became an autonomous research institute in 1971 and took the name of Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology. The institute has 7 research divisions, one Library and Information division and one Computer and Data division, at present and is fully funded by the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India. There are about 150 scientific staff and 100 technical staff working in the institute. The Director, IITM looks after the overall administration and research activity. A Governing Council reviews the activity of the institute periodically.

3.The major areas of research:
i) Forecasting Research Division: NWP model and modeling studies for the short-range forecast of the Indian region. Statistical meteorological data analysis studies on seasonal prediction of monsoon activity. ii) Theoretical Studies Division: Development of AGCM and ocean models for monsoon simulation studies. Modeling studies of the Indian Ocean, atmospheric energetic and instability studies. iii) Climatology and Hydrology Division: Statistical analysis of Indian monsoon rainfall, ENSO-Monsoon relationship studies, dendroclimate studies using the Himalayan tree rings. iv) Instrument and Observational Techniques Division: Atmospheric electricity studies. v) Climate and Global Modeling Division: Understanding the interannual variability in Indian Monsoon using atmospheric GCMs. vi) Boundary Layer and Land Surface Process Study Division: Observational and theoretical aspects of land surface processes and planetary boundary layer. vii) Physical Meteorology and Aerology Division: Cloud physics, chaos studies, probing of trace gases using laser technique and spectroscopy.

The institute has collaborative projects with USA and UK and other government agencies also finance some of the projects. The institute was involved in major national and international observational programs like MONEX, IIOE, MONTBLEX (Monsoon Trough and Boundary Layer Experiment), INDOEX (Indian Ocean Experiment), CLIVAR, IGBP etc. The institute has produced good number of scientific research papers in the field every year. Last year, 51 papers were published in national and international journals and 64 publication as reports and 108 papers were presented in national and international seminars. Some of these results have greatly helped in the understanding of variability in monsoon rainfall over India and the associated mechanisms.

Dr. Swadhin Kumar Behera
I joined the institute in June 1988 after completing Masters degree in Oceanography. The research facility and the research environment being available in the institute impressed me. The institute has always encouraged the young people to take new subjects of research and has provided enough freedom to carry out independent research work. It has also provided enough support for the reorientation courses to the researcher, coming from different backgrounds for taking research fields in Atmospheric Sciences, including Oceanography. Before coming to IGCR, I was working on Indian Ocean modelling, in Theoretical Stadies Division.

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