More automated weather stations to be installed at Gamo Highlands’

College of Natural Sciences’ Department of Meteorology and Hydrology has recently conducted a workshop on ‘Advancing weather-crop forecasting science in Gamo Highlands’ in association with Wageningen University and Research Centre, Netherlands, on 9th April, 2016, at Abaya Campus. Click here to see the Pictures.

 

Department head, Mr Mulugeta Genanu, welcoming participants, termed the collaboration with Wageningen University is of utmost importance as it stands to build AMU’s capacity. It will further lead to understanding of technical nuances of weather forecast ultimately boosting crop production; he also hoped the ties to grow in future.

AMU’s PhD scholar in Wageningen University, Mr Thomas Torora, studying climate impact on potato productivity informed six automated weather and soil moisture stations imported from USA will be installed at Bonke, Arba Minch, Arba Minch Zuria, and Chencha woredas. Collected data will help to validate models’ performance and improve their capacity; it can even be sent on net server and mobile phones, he said.

The workshop aimed at introducing new state-of-the-art model in weather forecast to simulate weather dynamics in region to enhance crop production in Gamo Highlands. The high resolution weather crop integrated model output will help farmers to improve potato productivity.

Visiting dignitary Prof. Dr Michiel van der Molen, said, the project, began a year ago, has noticed potatoes need water and sunlight to grow but temperature variability and soil moisture determine its yield. High temperature affects its production while cold makes it susceptible to diseases and factors like mountain range, drought and climate change also impact it.

He also revealed the desirability of Wegeningen University to accept AMU students for Master degree who can do the follow-up projects.

The workshop began with Prof. Michiel Molen speaking on air quality, agriculture and the role of meteorology. Mulugeta Genanu talked about remote-sensing based estimation, Tesema Adamu explained about performance evaluation of furrow irrigation in sugarcane fields and Mr Thomas Torora gave insight into modeling potato productivity in complex terrain. Dr Bert Heuisnkveld imparted training on meteorological instrumentation & data processing.

 

(By Corporate Communication Directorate: Philips Joseph)