Scientific robots to swim in Bay of Bengal in monsoon study


NEW DELHI (AP) — Scientists are getting ready to release robots into the Bay of Bengal in a study aimed at improving predictions of the region’s monsoon rains.

The seasonal monsoon, which hits the region between June and September, delivers some 70 percent of India’s surface water. Its arrival is eagerly awaited by hundreds of millions of subsistence farmers across the country, and delays can ruin crops or exacerbate drought.

Yet, the rains are hard to predict, and depend on a complex interplay between global atmospheric and oceanic movements that is not yet fully understood.

Scientists from the University of East Anglia said Tuesday the underwater robots being released from a ship into the bay later this month would be monitoring ocean temperatures and currents.