IRGC forms drone unit for cloud seeding

Tasnim – The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Aerospace Force has created a drone unit to carry out cloud seeding projects in different parts of Iran, an official said.

Shahab Jamshidi, representative of the IRGC Aerospace Force at a meeting on cloud seeding, held in Tehran on Friday, said the military force has created the specialized drone unit to carry out cloud seeding projects in five regions across the country.

He described the pilotless aircraft as a perfect option in cloud seeding practices considering their high maneuverability and low costs of flight.

In January 2018, IRGC Aerospace Force Commander Brigadier General Amir Ali Hajizadeh voiced readiness to help the Energy Ministry carry out cloud seeding operations, saying his forces were at the Iranian nation’s service and would mobilize all equipment to help the administration.

It came after frequent droughts and low rainfall in Iran in last autumn forced the administration to opt for cloud seeding in the hope of squeezing more precipitation out of the atmosphere.

Cloud seeding originated in the US in the 1940s. The method generally used in the winter involves ground-based generators set at high elevations that are literally fired up to release plumes containing silver iodide crystals into storm clouds. When water vapor or droplets attach to the silver iodide crystal, latent heat is also released, and it increases cloud size and the duration of storms.

Global warming has forced many arid and semi-arid areas around the world, including Iran, to suffer from drought.