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Nagpur burns at 56°C after Delhi hits 52.9°C: IMD raises heatwave alarm

The temperature measurements from Nagpur were taken at various locations. The Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya, serving as an AWS, recorded an astonishing 56 degrees Celsius.

Nagpur burns at 56 degree Celsius after Delhi hits 52.9 Celsius: IMD raises heatwave alarm AJR
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First Published May 31, 2024, 12:51 PM IST

In a surprising turn of events, two of the four automatic weather stations (AWS) set up by the India Meteorological Department (IMD) in Nagpur have recorded abnormally high temperatures, exceeding 50 degrees Celsius. These readings have crossed even those recorded by the Mungeshwar AWS in North-West Delhi, which reported a historic high of 52.9 degrees Celsius on Wednesday.

The temperature measurements from Nagpur were taken at various locations. The Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya, serving as an AWS, recorded an astonishing 56 degrees Celsius.

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Another AWS, placed at the Regional Meteorological Centre (RMC) at Sonegaon, registered 54 degrees Celsius. Meanwhile, the AWS at the Central Institute of Cotton Research (CICR) in Khapri, off Wardha Road, and the AWS in Ramtek both showed temperatures of 44 degrees Celsius.

The high readings have raised eyebrows following the recent Delhi heat scare, which is believed to be India's highest maximum temperature. However, the accuracy of these AWS recordings is under scrutiny. Regional meteorological officials have cautioned that AWS sensors tend to malfunction at temperatures beyond 38 degrees Celsius.

"AWS sensors have a fault. After a certain threshold temperature, the recordings become unreliable. They work fine for temperatures below 38-40 degrees. This is called positive bias in scientific parlance. The expansion of requisite elements needs to be linear, but the process loses its linearity in high temperatures," a senior forecasting scientist at the RMC said.

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Supporting this caution, a recent study by the climatology lab at Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology (VNIT) highlighted significant temperature variations across Nagpur. The study found that local climate zones within the city, influenced by factors such as dense residential areas, open green spaces, and barren lands, contribute to these temperature discrepancies.

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