Early forecast of localized torrential rain
NHK -- Mar 14
A group of researchers in Japan says it has developed a system aimed at making early forecasts of localized torrential rains.

The group is led by Seiji Kawamura, chief researcher at the National Institute of Information and Communications Technology, located in Koganei, Tokyo.

The system relies on terrestrial waves used to broadcast digital radio. When the amount of vapor in the atmosphere increases to form rain clouds, it causes a delay in transmission. The system makes estimates based on the delay.

The group carried out experiments using an antenna on the roof of the institute. It recorded transmission delays with a precision of one-trillionth of a second.

It says the estimated changes in vapor amounts were almost the same as those calculated by the method of observing temperature, atmospheric pressure and humidity at the same site. The group says the system is simpler and cheaper than the observation method and capable of covering wider areas.

Kawamura says the technology can be used anywhere and at lower costs. He said localized torrential rains can cause tremendous damage in a matter of 10 to 15 minutes, and that his group hopes to limit the effects of disaster through early forecasting.

The group aims to put the system into practical use by 2020, when Tokyo will host the Olympic Games.

News source: NHK
Oct 21
Typhoon Lan is expected to reach waters near Okinawa Prefecture's Daitojima region at dawn on Sunday. (NHK)
Oct 21
An elderly driver has run over pedestrians in Tokyo's busy district of Kichijoji, reportedly injuring 7 people. (NHK)
Oct 21
Miyazaki Prefectural Police have arrested a 62-year-old man in the murder of the manager of a diner in Miyazaki City last month, reports Jiji Press (tokyoreporter.com)
Oct 21
The Tokyo metropolitan government said Friday it will issue 10 billion yen in "green bonds" for institutional investors on Oct. 31. (Jiji)
Oct 21
Dressed entirely in black and quick on his feet, he eluded Osaka's finest for nearly a decade. And then, to their surprise, they discovered upon his arrest that he is an elderly man. (tokyoreporter.com)
Oct 21
Tokyo Metropolitan Police have arrested six street touts over the alleged aggressive solicitation of pedestrians in the Ueno area of Taito Ward, reports the Sankei Shimbun. (tokyoreporter.com)
Oct 20
On the occasion of her 83rd birthday Friday, Empress Michiko welcomed the award this year of the Nobel Peace Prize to the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons as a meaningful development in efforts to eliminate nuclear weapons. (Japan Times)
Oct 20
Japanese police say more than 900 people under the age of 18 were victimized through social media in the first 6 months of this year. (NHK)
Oct 20
Japan's volcanic eruption prediction committee offered the view Thursday that a major eruption may occur at Mount Shinmoe in the southwestern region of Kyushu. (Jiji)
Oct 20
Nissan Motor has just announced it will suspend domestic shipments of vehicles from all 6 factories in Japan. (NHK)