Extreme weather risks in Bulgaria: hail-supression system
Topic of the practice
Mitigation of risks from extreme weather event
Good Practice Information
Bulgaria’s geographic location makes the country very prone to hail storms. In order to mitigate this problem, Bulgaria established a Hail Suppression Agency and hail suppression system, which was introduced in 1968. The method operates through the RAPIRA system, which delivers an artificial ice-forming nucleus (AgI) reagent into clouds using rockets. The system also includes three MRL5-IRIS radar stations for automatic volumetric scanning of the atmosphere and data archiving. The practice carries out hail suppression activity to effectively reduce the risks of hail damage to agricultural crops in protected areas. The independent valuation of hail damages to the agricultural crops is made after every cloud seeding activity. The practice functions since 1968 and despite cuts in the administration it remained functional because it is effective in safeguarding agricultural crops from damage.
Evidence of success
With this practice the process of preventing damages from hail-storms was institutionalized. The practice itself is also innovative: most of the project partners were not familiar with radar monitoring of hailstorms, analysis of real time meteorological radar information and delivering of reagent - artificial ice-forming nucleus (AgI) in clouds by means of rockets for suppression of hail-storms.
Contact details to obtain further information on the practice
Annex completed on: 09-12-2012