Union Minister of Earth Sciences, Shri Kiren Rijiju, announced that the India Meteorological Department (IMD) has introduced the Heat Index on an experimental basis. The Heat Index is designed to offer general guidance for regions in India where the combination of temperature and humidity results in a higher apparent temperature or “feel-like” temperature, causing discomfort to people.
The Heat Index takes into account the impact of humidity along with the temperature to provide a more accurate representation of how hot it feels. It helps people understand the level of discomfort they may experience due to heat and humidity. Currently, IMD is using a heat index equation similar to the one used by the National Weather Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in the United States.
By introducing the experimental Heat Index, IMD aims to provide valuable information to the public about heat-related conditions, enabling them to take necessary precautions during hot and humid weather conditions. The Heat Index is an essential tool to raise awareness about the potential risks of heat-related illnesses and to promote public safety during extreme heat events.
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) is an agency of the Ministry of Earth Sciences, Government of India. It is the national weather forecasting agency of India and is responsible for providing weather forecasts, warnings, and other meteorological services to the Indian government and the public.
- Establishment: The IMD was established in 1875 by the British colonial government. It was originally known as the Meteorological Office, and its headquarters were located in Kolkata. In 1948, after India gained independence, the IMD was renamed the India Meteorological Department and its headquarters were moved to New Delhi.
- Mandate: The IMD’s mandate is to provide meteorological services to the Indian government and the public. These services include:
- Weather forecasts: The IMD provides weather forecasts for all parts of India. These forecasts are updated regularly and are available to the public through a variety of channels, including the IMD’s website, mobile app, and radio and television broadcasts.
- Weather warnings: The IMD issues weather warnings for a variety of weather hazards, such as cyclones, floods, and droughts. These warnings are issued to the public and to government agencies so that they can take necessary action to protect lives and property.
- Other meteorological services: The IMD also provides a variety of other meteorological services, such as climate data, environmental monitoring, and agricultural meteorology.
What is Heat Index?
The Heat Index is a calculation that considers both the temperature and humidity levels to give a more accurate representation of how hot it truly feels. Similar to the US, the Heat Index in India will also be color-coded to offer warnings based on the severity of the heat index. This color-coded system will serve as an essential tool to alert people about the potential dangers of extreme heat and enable them to take necessary precautions to protect their health and well-being.
Color Codes Used for Heat Index
- Green: – Experimental heat Index less than 35 deg C
- Yellow: – Experimental heat Index in the range of 36-45 deg C
- Orange: – Experimental heat Index in the range of 46-55 deg C
- Red: – Experimental heat Index greater than 55 deg C
- The Heat Index is crucial for understanding how the human body perceives temperature and comfort. When our bodies become too hot, we naturally sweat to cool down. However, if the perspiration cannot evaporate, our body’s ability to regulate temperature is compromised. Evaporation is a cooling process, and when sweat evaporates, it effectively lowers our body temperature.
- High atmospheric moisture content, also known as relative humidity, slows down the evaporation of sweat from our bodies, making us feel warmer in humid conditions. On the other hand, when relative humidity is low, the rate of perspiration increases, and we feel cooler in arid conditions.
- The Heat Index is directly related to both the air temperature and relative humidity. As air temperature and relative humidity increase, the heat index also rises, making us feel hotter. Conversely, when air temperature and relative humidity decrease, the heat index decreases, leading to a feeling of cooler conditions.
- Understanding the Heat Index helps us take necessary precautions in extreme weather conditions to stay comfortable and safeguard our health. By considering both temperature and humidity, the Heat Index provides valuable insights into how our bodies respond to different weather conditions and aids in making informed decisions to stay safe and comfortable.
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What is the IMD?
The IMD is the India Meteorological Department, an agency of the Ministry of Earth Sciences, Government of India. It is the national weather forecasting agency of India and is responsible for providing weather forecasts, warnings, and other meteorological services to the Indian government and the public.
How does the IMD work?
The IMD works by collecting meteorological data from a network of weather stations across India. This data is then processed by the IMD’s supercomputers to create weather forecasts and warnings. The IMD also uses this data to monitor the climate and to provide agricultural meteorology services.