How much harmful radiation are you exposed to? Find out now

Besides pollutants in atmosphere,soon,you will be able to find out how much harmful Ultraviolet radiation you are being exposed to daily.

Written by Nisha Nambiar | Pune | Published: February 22, 2012 1:47 am

Besides pollutants in atmosphere,soon,you will be able to find out how much harmful Ultraviolet (UV) radiation you are being exposed to daily.

The Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM) will put up display boards that will give out information on UV radiation at various chowks in the city. This will be the added feature of the System of Air Pollution Forecasting and Research (SAFAR),which will display the air quality through these boards. Some forms of UV radiation can be harmful for the human skin and may lead to skin cancer.

Display boards would help give information about the UV index at various chowks in the city. The Rs 15-crore project comes under the Ministry of Earth Sciences. The pilot run of the UV index display will begin in November,for which the data collection will start next month.

Director of the SAFAR programme,Dr Gufran Beig,said,“The feature will focus on the harmful form of UV radiation,called UV-B. We will display the UV index and daily erythemal dose information in addition to air quality. With these display boards,we should be able to predict the UV index a day in advance.”

The IITM,Pune experiment will be on the lines of display boards installed during the Commonwealth Games (CWG) in Delhi.

Under the project,at least 500 college students will check the number of vehicles at various chowks on week days as well as weekends. Data on pollutants,including diesel and petrol emissions,which will also be collected as part of the ‘emission inventory’.

“We need to monitor peak-hour traffic. Students will be posted at different chowks to collect the data. Information will also be sourced from the regional transport office as well municipal corporations. The students will be provided with forms,which they will fill accordingly. This is purely voluntary and the data collected can be used for their college dissertation. We have spoken to Fergusson College and Pune University authorities. Talks are on with other colleges too,’’ said Beig.

The data will be fed into a system similar to the one used during the CWG. These boards with emission inventory will then be put up at various chowks. According to senior officials from the department,talks are also on with various academic institutions,hospitals and municipal corporations to help provide secure and suitable place for these boards.

“There will be 10 monitoring stations and 15 display boards in a radius of 30 km,’’ said a senior official. The display board will also have weather parameters,including temperature,pressure,wind,speed,wind direction,radiation,humidity and rainfall.

The scheduled spots for the boards include Simla office,Swargate,PCMC,Hinjewadi,Balewadi,Hadapsar,airport and both the municipal corporations. The data will be displayed on 10X6 ft boards and will be easy for citizens to read,source said.

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