Integrated Himalayan Meteorology


In the Indian subcontinent context, Himalayas govern the climate and weather of the region and drive the major weather systems viz. Western Disturbances (WDs) during winter time and monsoon phenomenon during summer time.  Heavy snowfall events over the Western Himalayan region and the subsequent avalanches over the region affect life and property of the habitats. It also has a strategic importance for army operations.   Impact of the weather events are enhanced by topography which makes the area more prone to cloud bursts, flash floods and landslides.  In order to meet the region specific user requirements, it is important to have an optimal network of surface and upper air observing systems. Existing surface observations from the Meteorological Centres at Srinagar, Shimla, Dehradun, Gangtok and Itanagar  along with  upper-air stations at Jammu, Manali and Sasoma are only available to meet weather forecasting requirements of the specific region which is very sparse. An  enhanced network of surface and upper-air observations over the region will lead to improved weather forecasting services. Agriculture is highly sensitive to weather and management practices in mountain regions. IMD in collaboration with different organisations/institutes issues Agromet Advisories for state and district level for in the entire Himalayan region from Jammu and Kashmir up to Tripura. In order to improve the services in the entire region, skilful forecasts are essential that can be achieved through enhanced observation systems along with high resolution numerical weather  models.

(a). Objectives:

  1. To improve and upgrade mountain weather and climate monitoring and forecast services over the Himalayan region by establishing additional and critical state-of-the-art surface and upper air observatories for generating real time observations.
  2. Interfacing the Indian side observational network for integration with those of neighboring countries in the Himalayan region for a comprehensive analysis of mountain weather phenomena.
  3. To establish a robust mechanism to exchange scientific analysis based meteorological information towards the holistic Himalayan development through customized weather, climate, hydrological, ecological and environmental services.
  4. To build enhanced understanding of weather and climate processes over complex Himalayan terrain and render quality forecasting services.
  5. To build improved understanding of physical processes along with rapid intensification of valley scale high impact weather phenomena leading to heavy rainfall, heavy snowfall leading to cloud burst, flash floods, avalanches etc. towards the development of early warning systems.  
  6. To develop exclusive Himalayan climatology database for the region to capture the significant climate variability indices to meet the requirements of all users.

(b). Participating Institution:  

India Meteorological Department in association with the efforts of Snow and Avalanche Study Establishment of the DRDO

(c). Implementation Plan:

The implementation of this project will help to accurately identify, capture and monitor various weather systems affecting the region and provide better weather forecasts and warnings.  Improved data collection and archival will help in preparation of improved climatology for the region for the future.  With the availability of additional ground truth, verification of forecasts of numerical models can be carried out more realistically which will in turn, help in improving the mountain meteorological services.  Improved data collection, forecasts and warnings in respect of heavy precipitation/cloud bursts will help many sectors like army operations, agriculture, tourism, border roads and communications, power generation, water management, environmental studies and general public. All of these would also help in hydrometeorological hazard preparedness and risk reduction planning.

(d). Deliverables:

  • Commissioning and operation of full scale observing systems over the Indian Himalayas
  • Building appropriate local/valley scale numerical weather analysis-assimilation and prediction models
  • To operate exclusive mountain meteorological services for the Himalayan states of India
  • The meteorological parameters will form an integral part of the mass balance studies of selected Himalayan glaciers proposed to be taken up under the Cryosphere studies by NCPOR.

(e). Budget Requirement : Including foreign exchange component: ` 300 crores

(Rs. In crores)

Budget Requirement
Name of Scheme2012-132013-142014-152015-162016-17Total
Himalayan Meteorology30601006050300


Last Updated On 08/14/2018 - 12:05
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