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Electric rainmaking technology gets Mexico's blessing

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1 Author(s)

From at least the early 1940s to the end of the 20th century, it always rained more in the state of Jalisco, in central Mexico, than in its neighbor Aguascalientes. But in 2000, on a patch of parched pasture in Aguascalientes, workers from Mexico City-based Electrificacion Local de la Atmosfera Terrestre SA (ELAT) erected a peculiar field of interconnected metal poles and wires somewhat resembling the skeleton of a carnival tent. Since then, about as much rain has fallen on the plains of Aquascalientes as on its more lush neighbour. There are now 17 such installations in six states in Mexico, and in January, federal government agencies decided to back construction and operation of 19 more by 2006, potentially altering the weather in much of parched north and central Mexico. The merits of the various technologies involved are discussed.

Published in:

Spectrum, IEEE  (Volume:41 ,  Issue: 4 )