Chief weather forecaster for the Wentian lab launch: Condition is good
Zheng Yibing

The weather condition for the launch of the Wentian lab module to China's space station in July is good, according to Gan Sijiu, the chief weather forecaster at the Wenchang Spacecraft Launch Site for the mission.

She shared her opinion on the weather forecast for the launch missions in an exclusive interview with CGTN.

"The rocket launch has certain requirements on weather and meteorology environment. It cannot be done during thunderstorms or during heavy precipitation," said Gan. "It should avoid strong winds, including surface wind and close-to-the-ground air currents."

Gan noted that the numerical models at their station can predict typhoons seven to ten days in advance.

She stressed that it's just a trend and it's key to make sure there are no typhoons expected seven days after transporting the flight combination to the launchpad. She said that they need to forecast that.

"Our monitoring network is huge because it can cover a radius of more than 400 kilometers. This means we never miss any weather processes to find out suitable weather conditions," the chief weather forecaster for Wentian lab module mission said.

Gan said that in that system, first, they need to do some statistical analysis to find out what information systems affect them the most, and then what consequences they will lead to.

A meteorological station at the Wenchang Spacecraft Launch Site. /CGTN

A meteorological station at the Wenchang Spacecraft Launch Site. /CGTN

She said, like a microwave device they adopted is used to find out whether there will be a thunderstorm.

"This 24-hour device can detect weather events. In the past, we used sounding balloons for weather forecasting," Gan said. "So, we not only have increased the monitoring quality, but replaced it with the newest facilities as well."

Then, the system improved the observational data, simulated the numerical value and made the forecast better.

"I love this job very much. I chose it from the beginning. I think it very important for those in or outside this post, because this is the last checkpoint for us to decide whether we will make the launch," she said.

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