The Andhra Pradesh government has launched a weather forecast app called Varuna for farmers. Using latest groundwater and satellite technologies, the app receives inputs from high density automatic weather stations in the state and weather forecast data coming in from ISRO and agencies in US and Europe.
With accurate forecast parameters like temperature, wind speed, rainfall and humidity; Varuna is a useful app for farmers. The app is a unique one because it offers real time groundwater position in 1299 micro basins through 1255 groundwater stations. Minister for Water Resources Devineni Umamaheswara Rao reportedly said that the Android app that could be downloaded at Google Play Store would be popularised at the 90 day State-wide water conservation drive to be launched on April 15 by the CM.
The app is available on Google Play as ‘Andhra Pradesh Varuna’ and its description reads –
State Government of Andhra Pradesh’s Real time Command & Communication Centre, in collaboration with its Planning department, ISRO SHAR and Technology Partner Vassar Labs, wants to make use of high density Automatic Weather Stations and Ground Water Piezometers installed across the state and weather forecast data received from ISRO to provide accurate weather parameters like Rainfall, Wind Speed, Temperature and Humidity across the state.
The application is available only on Google Play as of now, the iOS version is also expected to be launched soon. The state government also looks forward to using satellite technology to improve rainwater harvesting in those areas that lack irrigation facilities. Andhra Pradesh Space Applications Centre senior scientist A Nageswara Rao reportedly said that ideal locations to build 20,000 check dams and earth-filled dams have also been identified using satellite technology.
“It will take years to conduct a physical survey, but by using satellite technology we are able to prepare a plan before the rainy season,” he reportedly added.