New scientific rainfall tool set to predict rain bursts

New scientific rainfall tool set to predict rain bursts

Beef News
Dr Chelsea Jarvis provided producers with information about a tool the Northern Australia Climate Program is working on to predict rainfall bursts.

Dr Chelsea Jarvis provided producers with information about a tool the Northern Australia Climate Program is working on to predict rainfall bursts.

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Science could soon help beef producers make better decisions by providing information about upcoming rain bursts.

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Science could soon help beef producers make better decisions by providing information about upcoming rain bursts.

Chelsea Jarvis from the Northern Australia Climate Program said a burst probability calculating tool scientists are working on could help provide producers with next level rainfall data.

Dr Jarvis shared her insights at the Ken Coombe Tech Yards at Beef Australia 2021 on Monday, explaining how the tool, created by Tim Cohen, could help producers in their day-to-day operations.

The product shows the probability of a certain amount of rainfall falling within three days.

Dr Jarvis said the program was aimed at providing detailed rain predictions that could be used in decision-making in a way that was different from current forecasting tools.

"For people who live in cities, we just need to know whether we need an umbrella or not so 5mm might actually make a difference but for people on property, they want to know if they're going to get good rain so that way they can make decisions around cropping or moving cattle between pastures," she said.

Dr Jarvis said the tool would calculate what percentage chance a producer would have of seeing a rainfall burst within a certain timeframe, whether it be a week, a fortnight or more.

"You'll pretty much never see a forecast for 100 per cent for 20mm on this day in this location and that's because of course we can't see the future," she said.

"We acknowledge that rainfall is patchy and these products give us a good idea but until we can see the future we can never say 'this paddock is going to get 5mm, this paddock's going to get 20mm and this paddock is going to get 30mm'.

"Forecasts just help us make more informed decisions."

The tool is currently in a testing phase but the NACP team hopes to make it publicly available in the next 12 months. The exact platform for the product is yet to be determined.

The NACP hopes to hear more feedback from producers while at Beef Australia 2021 to help with the rollout of the project.

The story New scientific rainfall tool set to predict rain bursts first appeared on Queensland Country Life.

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